Feeding Your Koi Fish and Goldfish: Everything You Need to Know

Feeding Your Koi Fish and Goldfish: Everything You Need to Know

When caring for your koi fish and goldfish, feeding is a primary concern. After all, if you don't feed your fish enough, there can be disastrous effects. In low water temperatures, your fish's metabolism will slow to the point where feeding can become dangerous, resulting in failing health and eventually death. At the same time, overfeeding your fish will result in increased biological waste in the pond, a decline in water quality, and can prove fatal as well. For these reasons, you must be feeding your koi fish and goldfish correctly using the proper feeding techniques.

Today, Koi Fish USA will be telling you everything you need to know about feeding your koi fish and goldfish. Generally, you can provide koi fish anything that you feed goldfish. Both fish are technically species of carp and will eat mostly anything organic from koi food and vegetables to dead leaves and krill and plankton. For this reason, much of the advice that we'll provide in this article will apply to both types of fish. Let's get started!

Feeding Tips For Growing Healthy, Happy Fish

Any koi fish or goldfish owner will tell you that one of the most rewarding parts about owning your fish is feeding them. Seeing your fish come to the surface to receive food, even eating from the palm of your hand at times, is one of the best bonding experiences you can have with your fish as an owner. Interestingly, it is said that while koi fish have a memory of around three minutes, they learn to recognize their feeders over time! Here are some feeding tips that you should keep in mind to help your koi fish and goldfish grow to a healthy size while thriving in their environment.

How Many Times a Day Should You Feed Your Fish?

One of the most common questions we receive here at Koi Fish USA is how often koi fish and goldfish need to be fed. It is highly recommended that you feed your fish between 2 and 4 times per day. There are a multitude of factors that will determine how frequently.  Water temperature is an important factor to consider. The warmer the water the faster your fish will digest and be hungry again.  You also have to consider how much waste your filtration system can handle. The more you feed the more waste is created that your filter will need to remove. We also highly recommend only feeding your fish as much as they can eat within five minutes to avoid overfeeding them or having uneaten food dirtying your water.

What Should You Feed Your Koi Fish and Goldfish?

Koi fish and goldfish will eat just about anything. As omnivores, they particularly enjoy small bugs and insects and devour plants and algae found at the bottom of the fish pond. You can also buy store-bought koi fish food or goldfish food. Additionally, koi fish and goldfish will even eat "people food." A few favorites include cereal, shrimp, lettuce, peas, rice, and even watermelon. One of the best things about owning koi fish and goldfish is the sheer variety of healthy foods for them. You have no shortage of options when feeding your fish a balanced diet!

 All of that being said, it is most important that a high-quality diet designed specifically for koi is fed regularly. Protein content, for example, is very important. Protein should be derived from fishmeal or shrimp meal. Ensure that your koi are regularly being fed these all-important foods for the most balanced diet possible!

Be Careful Not to Feed Your Fish Before Storms

Believe it or not, feeding your koi fish and goldfish just before a storm can prove detrimental to their health. When digesting food, fish need more oxygen. When it rains, dissolved oxygen levels in the water decrease, making feeding your fish at this time something to avoid. Stay on the lookout for any rain in the forecast, and plan your feeding times around this.

Make Feeding Time Bonding Time

As your koi and goldfish age, they will begin to recognize you as their feeder after only a short amount of time. To take advantage of this valuable bonding time with your fish, be sure to feed them consistently. Before long, your fish will recognize you as you approach the pond and even rise to the surface to greet you!

Feeding Preferences Depending on Size

It should be noted that your fish's size will determine the type of food you should feed them. While smaller fish will need to eat flake or small koi food, larger fish typically prefer a larger sized pellet food. Take this into account when shopping for your fish food!

Food For the Different Seasons

Typically, fish prefer more carbohydrate-rich foods early in the spring and late in the fall. In early summer, during mating season, protein-rich foods are preferable. Make sure you stay up to date on the type of food that is best for your fish, depending on the season! This is key to helping them flourish and grow.

Feeding in the Winter

Believe it or not, koi fish can go all winter without eating because their metabolism slows to a crawl. While goldfish can survive several months of hibernation, you should feed them slightly more than usual in the months leading up to winter in preparation. Once the temperature cools, begin feeding less. It should also be noted that the water temperature must drop gradually for fish to adapt appropriately. After your water has dropped below 55 degrees feeding should be paused until Spring when water temperatures rise back above 55 again.

Feeding if Your Pump Breaks

It should also be noted that in the event that your pump breaks, koi fish feeding is not recommended. This is because your koi fish require oxygen to digest their food. If your pump breaks, don't feed your koi fish until it is fixed. It should also be noted that one should have a separate aeration system powered by a separate circuit breaker to help reduce the risk of mass fish casualties in the event of your pump breaking.  You may also consider adding an automatic backup generator in case an power outage occurs.

Enjoy Healthy, Hardy Koi Fish and Goldfish from Koi Fish USA!

Now that you know some of the top tips regarding feeding your koi fish and goldfish, it's time to create your very own fish pond! For helpful tips regarding how to build the perfect koi fish pond, check out our article on the subject. That being said, no fish pond is complete without, well, the fish! If you're looking for the highest quality fish at a budget-friendly price, look no further than Koi Fish USA. Our specialty is providing beautiful and healthy standard koi, butterfly koi, and goldfish to customers all over the United States. With convenient next-day delivery, you'll be able to enjoy your new fish sooner than any other company.

We're so confident that you'll be pleased with your purchase that we even offer a 14-day guarantee. If any of your fish die within 14 days of receiving your shipment, we can provide you with either a refund or replacement. With over 35 years in the online koi fish and goldfish industry, we have the knowledge and expertise you're looking for. Shop our selection today, and feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns!