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This website is dedicated to Ol'Conrad.  He passed away shortly after Christmas, 2013.  He had made stupendous contributions to our hobby through his dedicated and careful breeding of aquatic animals.  He was a good friend and best buddy of Pete's and will not only be missed greatly by Pete, the hobby will forever have lost a valuable friend and asset. But his progeny will live on forever in his memory.
One of the most often questions by folks new to the hobby is how often do I feed my fish and does it matter what they eat or what is the best food to feed.  Within this chapter we hope to clear up those questions or give you thought to ask more.  Or crap, you can Google it up yourself, or maybe not - just cause it is on the internet, does not mean it is correct, you need to look up several citations and then compare those to what you read here.  But, meanwhile this is a great place to start your education tho the only degree might be a BF,  bachelors in fish.  

First let's hear from Ol'Lotsoffish himself, then a few comments to what Pete says.  "That brings me to another point I am always trying to tell folks about feeding fish. In the wild fish do NOT eat "all they can eat in 10 minutes, **(does this statement sound familiar?) once a day". I have talked to other hobbyists and read in numerous books, forums and the backs of fish food cans how we are supposed to feed our fish all they can eat in a few minutes, once a day.

That is absolute nonsense and nobody's going to raise show quality fish "or even healthy fish" with this sort of feeding regiment. It's plain old dumb information and fish have NOT evolved to be fed this way. Most fish spend their entire waking hours thinking about 3 things.

Finding and eating as much food as they can, having sex with other fish, and not becoming food while pursuing the first 2 things I just mentioned. We should be feeding our fish as much and as often as we can "without polluting the water and the amount to feed can actually be learned only feeding and observing.  You watch for what they poop out, if their bellies get full when being fed, etc.  If in doubt it is best to underfeed until you learn your tank's inhabitants. And remember by feeding 3 to 4 x's a day with frequent water exchanges as outlined in the page Pollution Solution, you will have healthy happy fish. ") and if we don't we are simply creating the type of environment for them that they normally would NOT thrive in out in the real world.   **my comments inserted, Karen

BallAquatics - 05-07-2011 08:33 PM
Hey Pete, I couldn't agree more with your views on feeding fish.... more feedings is better & live food is the best for a number of reasons.


Mickmac247 - 10-18-2011 05:20 PM
Isn't that what cat fish and other bottom feeders are for. Feed away and into the night.**please do not take this literally, such an attitude will polute the water and kill fish.

​First let's discuss prepared foods and where or where not to purchase them.  Normally the worse place to buy prepared fish food is at one of the chain stores.  They usually just carry foods that are mass produced for the millions of folks who believe what the employees tell them is gospel.  The quality of these foods could be likened to you eating the same ole burger at a fast food place meal after meal.  Bland and boring, filled with chemicals and, well you get the idea.  I hope!!

There are three places I will highly recommend fish foods be purchased.  First and foremost tho not the best but then again it might be, is Lotsoffish's Mix #2.  It is my main staple food and I suck at keeping live foods alive so I have used it for starting newly free swimming angelfish, newly dropped live bearer fry, Cory Cat fry, and others.  The beauty of his food is if you feel your fry are smaller than can comfortablty inhale the Mix #2 you can order from Pete Mix#1 which is great for teeny new free swimming fry  OR put the Mix #2 on a saucer and smush it up with the back of a spoon until you have a powder or use a pestal and mortar.   And here is where you can order Mix #2 on this web site.    
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...Next is from John.............PLECOCAINE IS HERE......................

You have heard about it...Now is the time to treat your fish right..With Plecocaine...They will thank you for it...
The cost for 1 pound of Plecocaine..is $6.00.
I feed all of my fish with Plecocaine...I would not waste my time selling this food if i did not believe in it and feed it to my own fish.
Plecocaine is a slow sinking food designed to stimulate growth in young fish..And it works.....You should see how big my granddaughter is getting.
There are 5 sizes of Plecocaine to chose from...

#01..............a powder for larger new fry...
#02............a granule for juveniles and smaller fish like tetras, barbs, danios and little plecos...
#03..........a small pellet 1/32" dia. for medium sized fishlike plecos,dwarf cichlids etc...
#04.........a medium pellet 1/16" dia. for larger fish...
We have added a new size for larger fish
#05.............. Slightly larger pellet approximately 3/16" some pellets float and some pellets sink making this a great food for many cichlids and other species...
if you would like; you could even get 2 one half pound packages of 2 different sizes....

Shipping for 1 pound of Plecocaine is $5.00 for USPS Priority Mail...A little more for larger quantities... I ship on Mondays and Wednesdays.. Method of payment is via paypal or USPS money order...But i do prefer paypal. paypal addy is..................mrloha at aol.com ...  (**I did his email weird cause of spy bots.")
If you have any questions;please feel free to ask
Now is my favorite all around place to purchase just about anything fishy including the best selection of fresh and varied fish foods.  Reptiles too. food that is. Just click on Kens to get to his website.

ex.  Freeze Dried Blood Worms
DISCLAIMER: I am sure there are other places on the internet where where you can buy perfectly fine foods, I am listing what I myself use and know for a fact is top banana! 
Now we get to hit on the topic of feeding live foods.  There is a  plethora of choices that can be made.  I will touch on just a few and also point you to others.  One of the most basic live foods since b.c. is white worms.  I grew them when I was a kid but now, living in Florida I found it impossible to raise them.

 This is from Lotsoffish. "I have maintained the same WW culture for well over 6 years. I feed them nothing but white bread with the crust removed cuz they don't like the crust as much and it tends to mold. I sprinkle a few drops of water onto the bread and add it to the culture. Cover the culture with a pane of glass to help keep in moisture and for the ww to cling to when you pick up the glass and want to grab some to feed to the fish.

You can feed directly if not much soil clingy to the worms but dropping them in some water to rinse will help clean them.  There they will form a ball, just pour the water off and there are the worms, ready to feed.

  The big issue with white worms is they are just like night crawlers regarding heat. If they get too warm they die just as quickly as those crawlers do when you are sitting on the shore and you leave your worms in the sun too long. They are sort of a pita to use as food in the summer cuz of this cuz if you keep them in the fridge they WILL stay alive but then they breed kinda slow.

  I always keep mine on my basement floor in the coolest area of the basement and they somehow manage to make it through the summer but it's touch and go during heat waves.

  On the other hand I am weird and don't air condition cuz it gives me a slight headache when I use it and a major migraine when I get my electric bill."

white worms growing on soil with a piece of bread and worms showing thru the cover glass.
white worms on underside of glass ready to be picked off and prepared to be fed
Next are Microworms and Grindal Worms  


Google up the culture instructions.
The short story is you need a plastic shoebox or two,
purina kitten chow and some coco fiber bedding ...Just FYI- That quote from me was instructions for culturing Grindal Worms, not Whiteworms. Bread is fine for them. 
I think I have mentioned it before, but if you don't have a year round cool place, try the Grindal Worms. They do fine in regular room temps all winter, and actually multiply faster 
in the summer months. Much easier than fooling around with mini fridges and cultures by the air conditioner..... 

yeahbut quote from someplace -- Unlike their larger cousins, nightcrawlers (45 F) and white worms (55 F),
Grindal worms do best at room temperature.
You can keep them right next to your fish tank if you desire.
And you can feed them the same food you feed your fishes if you prefer.

The Grindals and the Microworms are close to the same, only experts can tell the difference between them when looking at them.  Pete feeds his culture of Microworms instant potatoes moistioned with water to a mushy texture. These are great for young growing fry and fish of any age, any size that like worms.

Microworms in a small plastic container
Daphnia,  genus of small, planktonic crustaceansia is an interesting little item I use to collect out of quiet ponds when I was a kid, net them out then dump them into a container of water.  The only thing was I usually brought home some small red wiggly leaches too so I had to be on the lookout for. I read where Pete has had luck growing them in his tanks that contain fish but, am unable to locate it just yet to quote him.  Meanwhile

tpetsfl - "Ideally what works best is to have the tank with the Daphnia in it,,,,,and have another container,,,,gallon jar,,,,half gallon jar
,,,,something like that,,,,sitting in a window or under strong light,,,and culture suspended algae (green water) and introduce green water 
to the daphnia tank daily to feed them. Green water and enough food to feed a culture of Daphnia isn't going to happen in the tank that t
he Daphnia themselves are in. The culture will most likely starve and crash unless fed."

Green water to feed to the Daphne, a few drops is given to them to keep them happy and alive.
While looking around today I found this nice web site.  It explains alot of other live foods that people feed plus, they sell cultures.  I have not tried them so can not put them on my list WOWZER get your starters here.  But here is the address for you to check out.  It has some great reading, how accurate the info is, I can not vouch for but it appears to be pretty much on the ball.  

And  here I will talk about here are Brine Shrimp.  They are Artemia which is a genus of aquatic crustaceans known as brine shrimp. Artemia, the only genus in the family Artemiidae, has changed little externally since the Triassic period.  They can be purchased frozen in adult size or newly hatched.  They can sometimes be purchased alive at LFS, but do not just dump the bag into the tank, net them out to feed.  Unfed brine shrimp can be then placed in the frig and they will live quite awhile or at least the couple days or so it will take you to feed them.

You can also purchase their eggs, Kens has them, and hatch your own.  Be aware of the guaranteed hatch rate for the higher the hatch rate the happier you will be with the results.  But the higher the hatch rate guarantee the more they cost.
There are two basic ways to hatch the eggs.  Each hobbist has their own preferred method, here are the sites that give in detail the two methods.  BTW I do not recommend buying the hatching kit, that some sell, as you will see when you look at the websites, free is best.        

​this is how I hatched them as a kid and had great success

But now, I like this method.

or do as Auban: one of the things I used to do a lot was trade aquarium plants for dirt from vernal pools. I would then hydrate the dirt and then isolate and culture whatever critter showed up. 
There are some great places on the web,, ya just have to weed thru to find the good ones.
Beef Heart Paste Food   ***** see below



  2 fresh raw beef hearts
  2 lbs raw peeled shrimp
  5 oz of steamed, finely chopped spinach
  1/4 lb of cooked, finely chopped carrots
  1/4 lb of krill meal
  1-4 oz of spirulina powder (depending on species being fed)
  1/2 tsp of liquid vitamins
  4 oz of DiCalcium Phosphate (for essential calcium)
  6 tablespoons of unflavored gelatin
  Premium flake food - approximately 1 lb

De-vein and remove all fat from the beef heart. Use a food processor to chop the prepared heart to a very fine
 consistency ( a minute or so with the chopping blade). A meat grinder can also work well. Pass it through the 
grinder twice. Mix heart, shrimp, vegetables, krill powder, spirulina powder and vitamins in a large bowl. 
Dissolve gelatin in hot water. Mix the dissolved gelatin liquid into the beef heart mixture. It helps if the 
mixture is warm. Add the flake to thicken. The amount of flake added will vary with the amount of water in the 
mixture. You can use krill powder for the same purpose. Try to get it to the consistency of thick oatmeal. 
The more shrimp you use, the less gelatin you need. Ground, raw shrimp is like glue.

Immediately, place paste food in plastic fish bags and flatten to a thickness that when frozen, is easily broken 
with your fingers. Refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours before freezing. To feed, break off chunks of the frozen mix, 
and just drop it into the tank. The fish can readily eat from the chunk of food mixture. Trying to break it into 
small pieces can foul the water. If you need smaller pieces, use a sharp knife to shave it from the frozen block.

Substitutes: You can use very lean beef instead of heart. You can also use fish instead of shrimp, but fish will not 
bind the food as well and will require more gelatin. You can substitute different broad leaf vegetables for the 
spirulina powder.

This is a bit of work, but the effort is worth it after you see the results it makes in your fish. It may take your 
fish a day or two to figure out that this is food and that it's good. Get them hungry and then feed very small amounts 
at first. Clean up any uneaten food immediately. Once they get used to it, they will ravenously attack it, and grow as 
fast as possible with vibrant color.

***** This recipe makes more food than the average owner needs.  I cut it in half and ended up with 6 gal ziplocks 
that has 2 cups of mix smashed out.  Also, a food proccessor would work best for the meat.  I used a meat
grinder and it worked but, wish I had a food processoer.  There was no need to not feed for 2 days as ALL of
my fish went bonkers for it.  It does sink.  The Bristlenoses and corys thot it was candy.  :)

Also feed this lightly until you get use to it.  It is a very complete food with no fillers and it is best to feed
to little than to much.  GOOD STUFF!!