Marine Fish Food
There are a wide variety of foods available for your saltwater aquarium. In general, marine fish food can be broken down into four categories of flake/pellet, frozen, freeze dried and live.
The average hobbyist should steer away from flake food as it is high in phosphates, usually low in nutritional value and can promote unwanted algae growth. Although many Pellet Foods contain phosphate, most contain higher levels of nutrition and are a better alternative to flake foods. Pellet Foods are best used in an automatic feeder, especially during vacations.
Frozen Fish Food
Frozen Fish Foods are the staple diet for most saltwater fish. It is important to feed high quality foods that have been enhanced with Garlic, omega fatty acids and other Vitamins. These supplements can also be purchased separately and then added directly to the food. Your fish will also benefit from a variety of foods including Brine Shrimp, Mysis Shrimp, Krill, Squid and a Vegetarian Algae Blend.
When selecting a frozen food remember to check the expiration date. If it appears to have been thawed and then refrozen, select a different package. Also look for frozen food that has been rapidly frozen and gamma irradiated. These foods will be cleaner and will reduce the risk of introducing parasites into the aquarium. The best frozen foods will not have a strong fish odor or residues that stay on your fingers.
Freeze Dried Fish Food
The most common freeze dried foods are Coral Supplements. Some aquarists prefer freeze dried foods over liquid supplements because they do not contain the extra liquids which may or may not contain phosphates or nitrates. Popular freeze dried products are Cyclop-eeze and phytoplankton. In general, soak freeze dried foods in water before adding to the aquarium has they have a tendency to float on the water’s surface.
Finally, live foods should only be used on an as needed basis. Most feeder fish contain diseases that can be spread to other fish in the aquarium and cause unexplained death. Feeder fish should only be used to entice finicky eaters to eat until they have been trained to accept frozen food. There is an exception to the rule. If you culture phytoplankton, rotifers, copepods or brine shrimp these live feeds may be used to feed baby fish, adult fish and corals.
Ssaltwater aquarists should feed their fish a mixed variety of high nutrition foods. Popular foods include Brine Shrimp, Mysis Shrimp, Phytoplankton and Cyclopeeze. Aquarists should avoid foods high in phosphate and nitrate because leftovers can cause unwanted algae blooms.