Live foods are not as popular as they once were. For many, this is perhaps a decision based on ethics, coupled with the progressive availability of a whole host of nutritionally superior dried and frozen foods (which pose no disease introduction risk). There are very few fish that cannot be weaned onto prepared foods, and aside from the ethics and disease risk, the nutritional value of feeder fish is actually negligible compared to that of dried foods.
However, despite the advances in commercially prepared fish foods, some folks still like to culture their own small natural live foods such as daphnia and microworms for their community aquaria or for breeding projects. If you don't wish to culture your own, a number of retailers sell live bags of daphnia, bloodworm, or brineshrimp. These tend to only last a few days, even when refrigerated, so should be fed as soon after purchase as possible. Some of these small live critters may go on to live for some time in heavily planted aquaria before the fish discover them. River shrimp is often the food of choice for predatory fish that refuse dried/frozen foods, and is regularly cultured in large outdoor ponds. Lastly, live tubifex is best avoided as it is cultured in polluted mud, is often full of parasites, and subsequently thought to be responsible for many fish health issues. If you wish to feed tubifex to your fish, always opt for frozen which will have been gamma irradiated and safe to use.
NEW FROM TETRA FOR 2018 - Maidenhead Aquatics exclusive!
Please click here for a look at the new range of foods from Tetra, exclusive to Maidenhead Aquatics. All foods contain the unique BioActive formula, which incorporates a balanced mixture of Omega-3 fatty acids and essential vitamins for the best health and vitality. The advanced clearwater technology ensures a cleaner feed compared to regular foods, with less waste left in the aquarium and in the container itself.
The team from Maidenhead Aquatics visited this year's Aqua trade show in Telford to check out the latest product releases and aquatic innovations for the coming year from the industy's leading suppliers. Here's our round-up of some of the products that caught our eye and which you can look forward to seeing online and instore soon.