A varied diet is important to maintain good nutrition and the well-being of your fish. Offer supplementary foods in addition to the "staple" diet for better nutrition and to enrich the diet of your fish with greater tastes and textures.
Providing proper nutrition is a very simple way to maintain the health of your aquarium inhabitants. The body type, its natural environment, and where the fish prefers to feed, all play an important role in selecting the type of food that best suits the needs of your particular fish.
An improper or incomplete diet can result in nutrient and vitamin deficiencies and the onset of serious conditions such as stunted or improper growth, a weakened immune system, or death. Research the specific variety of fish you own to ensure the food you provide meets its nutritional needs.
Frozen foods range from meaty foods such as
shrimp or squid to vegetable fares such as spirulina and seaweed. Nutritionally complete frozen food can be used as a healthy staple diet or as a delicacy to supplement or to add variety. Frozen foods retain their nutritional value, natural taste, as well as their natural shape and appearance. This triggers an instinctive feeding response and fish eagerly devour frozen foods.
Similar to frozen foods, freeze-dried foods maintain natural nutrition, texture, and shape of live food but are processed differently for convenient storage and easy feedings. Freeze-dried foods also provide a great means for delivering liquid vitamin supplements by simply adding a few drops as needed. Some can be used as a staple diet, but most are better suited as treats.
These popular foods are specifically created to make up the bulk of your fish's diet, often available in nutritionally complete flake or pellet formulations. Flakes soften quickly without disintegrating, making them the most popular nutritional products available. Flake foods make their way slowly from the top to the middle, then eventually to the bottom of the aquarium to address the nutritional needs and feeding level preference of most popular aquarium fish. Pellet or wafer foods are available in floating or sinking varieties as well as carnivore formulations.
Liquid foods address the specific nutritional needs of young fish, filter feeders, and corals. They are usually a liquid suspension of minute food particles or plankton, small enough to be accepted by tiny hungry mouths. Because liquid foods are concentrated and easy to overfeed, offer sparingly and target feed with droppers or pipettes.