This is a common question asked by newbie Goldfish Keepers. How much to feed Goldfish? The quick answer is not much as they or you want to. Now if you have read our previous post called Goldfish don’t have a stomach then you must have learned Goldfish don’t have a stomach but a very long intestine. That means, unlike creatures who have a stomach they don’t get this feeling “Full”. This is the reason why this interesting fish just keep eating anything in their path. But this is not something healthy. Especially because they have abnormal bodies so balancing body is not an easy task for them. Often the end result of overfeeding and overeating is they become bloated. That’s when we see then turn upside down and stay like that.
How much to feed Goldfish
Goldfish are very smart. They have a long memory and they can even see more colors than we humans can see. So they know when someone near the tank there is a chance of getting food. This is why whenever they see someone near the tank they dash in front of the glass and go crazy. It’s quite hard for us to resist their begging but giving food every time they beg is not something good. It takes about 8 hours for Goldfish to digest food. So feeding then twice a day is more than enough. Especially for adult Goldfish. For fry/babies you can feed 4-5 times a day with a small water change every day. Don’t put more too much food. Always give them enough to eat in 5 minutes or so. They will be asking for more but you have to be strong and say NO.
Morning and early evening are the best time to feed them. That gives enough time to digest everything in their long intestines. Maybe just a little bit in the afternoon but it’s not necessary at all. Too much food is a loose-loose every time. Eat a lot mean they gonna poop a lot and water get dirty, filters get filled with poop fast so you will need to clean all too often. Water changes are good for any fish but overfeeding is not.
Signs of Overfeeding Goldfish
If there is still food at bottom of the tank 10 minutes after feeding then you are overfeeding your Goldfish. If you have a good filter system but still tank get dirty too often that’s another sign. This might happen because the tank is overcrowded too. If there is sludge in the gravel and water having a bad smell that’s another sign. In a worst-case fish will be having Swim Bladder Disorder.
What is Swim Bladder Disorder
Swim Bladder Disorder is one of the most common problems happen in a Goldfish tank. It can happen from intestinal parasites but the usual case is overfeeding. A few signs of swim bladder,
- Swimming on its side instead of with its body upright.
- Floating or upside down at the surface of the water.
- Struggling to swim downward.
- Sinking to the bottom of the tank and struggling to swim upward.
- Swimming with a tilted body, tail is higher than the head.
- Having trouble eating or breathing.
To cure Swim Bladder Disorder just stop feeding for 3 days. Then for another 3 days feed them only highly steamed, de-skinned and mashed or finely chopped peas or beans. They should get better fine by a week or so. You can avoid all these troubles if you know how much to feed Goldfish. Unlike many other fish types, you need to be careful about the diet of these guys.