It is sheer joy and excitement to harvest fish from your aquaponics system. This does not merely give you the satisfaction of looking after your fish but also being certain that the fish you are eating is healthy, free of any toxic elements, clean and can be a great source of protein.
If you are new to aquaponics, then you need to know how to properly raise your aquatic pets and what ingredients and features to search for when investing in the best fish food for aquaponics. The good news is that you could keep a broad variety of fish in your tank with aquaponics.
When it comes to looking for the most suitable fish for this environment, it is practical to research the fish species that are available in your local area by legality as well as weather conditions. And, bear in mind that keeping an eye on the aquaponics fish food that you are feeding your finned buddies is one of the most vital routines that you must do for your system’s environment.
Indeed, it is important to feed your pet fish consistently and you can do so by checking out the right foods that you can safely feed them. We will explore the most appropriate fish foods for your aquaponics in this post and you can learn more on how to get started and sustain your new hobby.
Table of Contents
- Best Fish Food for Aquaponics Reviews of 2021
- 1. CHUWPI AquaOrganic Aquaponics Fish Feed
- 2. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 1
- 3. Lakeway Tilapia Pro Pack 4000
- 4. Purina Mills AquaMax Pond Fish 4000
- 5. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 2
- 6. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 4
- 7. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 3
- What to Look for When Buying Fish Food for Aquaponics
- Frequently Asked Questions
Best Fish Food for Aquaponics Reviews of 2021
1. CHUWPI AquaOrganic Aquaponics Fish Feed
If you want to end up spending wisely on premium quality aquaponics fish food products, then this option is worth a shot. This is ideal to feed for various types of omnivorous pond fish such as tilapia, koi, and catfish. If you have fingerlings and fry to feed, you can easily crush the foods into a size that would perfectly fit them.
In addition to this, these foods are safe because they are specifically produced and made by experts in aquaponics, organic fish food, and aquaculture. Many pond fish keepers prefer this product because it is highly recognized for being purely organic fish food that does not contain any fish meal or GMO ingredients. It also comes with an organic guarantee and a detailed description of what it contains.
The size of the pellet is approximately a centimeter which can be too big for some fish; even so, you could either break it into smaller pieces or can be soaked in water. The pellets can become soft enough for your fish tank pets to pick at it.
These fish feeds come with a gritty texture and can make the water cloudy at every feeding. Aside from this, not all fish are too excited to devour the food so you have to be patient when feeding them just like when feeding a picky toddler.
2. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 1
This organic fish food contains plenty of highly nutritious ingredients that could offer countless health benefits to your fish tank or pond fish. Many fish hobbyists choose these feeds to allow their fish tank settlers to grow faster and live a healthier and happier life in an aquaponics system.
It is necessary to feed your finned friends with these feeds 3 times daily; the amount should be something that they could finish within 5 to 10 minutes. If you have plans of raising Bluegill, tilapia, koi, and catfish; then this food can work wonderfully for them.
Please be guided that it is important to store this fish feed in a dry and well-ventilated location to safeguard it from insects and rodents. As you know, keeping the food properly stored would help keep the product in good condition. To avoid tank water problems, be sure to avoid overfeeding your pond fish.
These foods come with very small grains that are smaller than the head of a tiny pin. Thus, this makes them ideal for tiny fish but would be quite small for average-sized fish. They sink immediately, so if your pet fish does not eat off the bottom, the food would rot and can foul the water. These are the possible issues that you may encounter if you feed your fish tank occupants with these foods.
3. Lakeway Tilapia Pro Pack 4000
Are you currently fishing for highly nutritious organic tilapia food? If so, then you should not miss what this product can offer your most prized pond fish. This fish food is highly recommended for feeding aquaponics fish and is known for being a product of professional tilapia farming feed.
Since this pro pack comes with newly produced tilapia fish foods, you can be guaranteed that you only get products in their best condition. Indeed, this is free of any contents that could bring about tank water cloudiness or make the water smell unpleasant provided that you use the feeds as directed.
If you would like to observe maximized fish growth, then you need to properly follow the feeding instructions. This product comes with daily feeding directions with precise amounts to feed your pond fish as well as solving other related fish feeding concerns.
As always, it is crucial to strictly adhere to the feeding instructions and ensure to use the feeds as per the manufacturer’s directions to avoid negatively affecting the water conditions and clarity. In line with this, do not expect all fish to like this food especially at the beginning. It would probably take a while for some fish to get used to this type of food so you need to be patient during feeding sessions.
4. Purina Mills AquaMax Pond Fish 4000
Would you like to feed your most precious pond fish with premium quality organic aquaponics fish food products? This option would work like a charm if you intend to promote optimal fish growth and sustain maximum fish health. This is a highly recognized plant protein-based fish diet that many expert fish hobbyists feed their fishtank inhabitants.
Not to mention, your fish won’t have difficulty swallowing and digesting the pellets because these are appropriately issued and highly digestible. As compared to other fish food options out there, this product can work effectively in impeding excessive fat deposition in the liver. Thus, you can be at peace to know that the foods won’t harm your pond fish in any way.
While it cannot be denied that these feeds are packed with essential nutrients, you may encounter a few problems if you do not use it as directed by the manufacturer of the product. The water could get filthy and slightly smelly if you overfeed. And, since this is not that affordable, anyone with a limited budget may find it a little expensive to invest in.
5. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 2
These organic fish food pellets are amazingly fortified with almost all the required nutrients for various types of omnivorous fish species to thrive in fish tanks or ponds. If you are raising juveniles at stage 2, then these feeds are a great way to get started. You won’t have trouble feeding aquatic pets that are 2.5″ to 4″ in size anymore since these foods are precisely designed for them.
As fish owners, we opt for feeds that are formulated with sufficient nutrients. This product contains more stabilized vitamin C so it significantly helps boost fish immunity and make them more resistant to acquiring infections, being attacked by bacteria and other fatal ailments. It also contains a good amount of protein content for rapid growth and overall wellness.
You need to take into consideration a couple of downsides if you choose this product and these consist of the product’s being easily perishable
especially if not stored in a dry and well-ventilated spot and these feeds are more susceptible to getting moldy.
6. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 4
Buying rangen fish food products can be a bit of work and slightly pricey at the same time. So, if you do not want to end up wasting your time, energy, and money; always opt for the most trusted and preferred brands. This way, even if you spend a little more; you can be guaranteed that you get the best value for your hard-earned money.
Furthermore, these pellets are highly nutritious and can work wonder when it comes to helping your pond fish live healthier, happier, and more active. Most fish are easily lured to devour these feeds and won’t cloud the water much if utilized as directed.
Still and all, although these feeds are great products for the aquaponics system, they are not always available if you look for them in local fish or pet stores. Oftentimes, local stores run out of stock or do not sell them and sometimes shopping for them online can be a bit challenging too because you need to wait for a few days before you can avail of stocks. And, their current price tag is not that attractive for those with a limited budget to spare for fish feeding.
7. AquaNourish Omnivorous Aquaponic Fish Feed – Stage 3
Investing in sustainable fish food for aquaponics is made easier these days. Sure thing, we all dream of getting the best deals when shopping. Fortunately, this product can serve your pond fish best as it is reliable in terms of providing maximum nutrition that your fish tank dwellers seriously need to thrive in an aquaponics system.
The pellets are suitably sized to feed your pond fish in intermediate or stage 3 levels. It contains 37% protein which is considered enough to help encourage faster and healthy fish development. Aside from this, it is also formulated with other valuable nutrients to promote longevity.
So, if you are currently taking care of 4″ up to 6″-sized Bluegill, catfish, koi, tilapia and other omnivores, you can give this feeds a try and personally witness how effective they are in what they are designed for.
All the same, these feeds can execute an exceptional job of providing adequate nutrition to pond fish but considering the size of the product, the packet is not big enough to last longer periods of fish feeding and the price tag seems not pocket-friendly. If not for the pricey selling cost and small packet size, this product would have been the best.
What to Look for When Buying Fish Food for Aquaponics
Before making the final shopping decision, it is practical to look into some useful buying guides first to ensure that you are not wasting any single cent for aquaponics fish food products.
Here is a helpful list of buying considerations that you can ponder on:
As detailed in this post, different brands manufacture excellent fish foods for aquaponics. You can check if the brand is reliable by carefully examining the most exceptional features of the product they manufacture, and their pros and cons. Luckily, credible online shopping sites carry the most popular and highly trusted brands that you can easily access.
- Old Customer Reviews/Feedbacks/Testimonials
Many of the most practical and honest advice appears in product reviews by consumers who purchased or used the product that you may pick to invest in. You can instantly locate the number of reviews and the ratings that owners submitted at the top of the page or just underneath the name of the product.
Indeed, as you click the highlighted terms, you can go over the positive and negative descriptions of the product that could assist you in deciding whether you’ll invest in it or not. This is a good way of making comparisons which one would best match your requirements.
- Price Tag
As always, the amount you must pay would have a huge impact on your final shopping decision. Fortunately, Amazon and other legit online shopping sites reveal the price below the product’s name, and from there, you could see the amount that you could save with any price reductions that the seller may offer.
- The Pros and Cons of the Product
Unquestionably, customer reviews provide consumers the most outstanding place to locate the downsides and upsides of the product chosen. The owners who liked a product would demonstrate the features that make them satisfied, and you could use their recommendations to assist you as you decide to purchase one like theirs.
For all that, unsatisfied customers could provide several reasons for not purchasing the product as well. Amazon may divide the customer reviews into good or bad; however, this does not provide you a list of pros and cons.
It is easier to find an exhaustive description of the functionality of the product as you scroll down the page below the pricing details. You could carefully review several functions that a product could perform next to the bullets.
For instance, the bullet points for aquaponics fish food may demonstrate the ingredients, pros, and cons of the product that you would need to discover.
- Customer Service
Amazon provides protection plans that guarantee that your product works as endorsed with some shopping considerations that protect the rights of the buyer. It is easier to report a problem through phone calls anytime; or if you prefer, you may also submit a claim online. Whatever shopping-related concerns you may have, rest assured that it would be properly taken care of.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the most trusted aquaponics fish food brands?
You surely won’t go wrong if you go for credible brands when looking for the most suitable fish foods for your aquaponics system. Needless to say, feeding your aquatic pets with the right foods and the right amount is a foolproof way to raise pond fish successfully. But, this would be far to happen if you’re incapable of picking the right types of foods for them.
Hence, it is highly suggested especially for novices to listen to the advice of expert fish hobbyists. Since they have been in the fish hobby for years, they are already insightful on how to properly look after omnivorous fish species. In particular, they are well aware of the aquaponics fish food brands that could outstandingly fulfill what they are purposely manufactured for.
Many expert fish keepers highly recommend the following brands for feeding fish species in your aquaponics system:
- The Aquaponic Source
- Purina Mills AquaMax
- Lakeway Tilapia
However, please take note that the products of these mentioned brands are priced slightly higher than their competitors. The reason behind this is because of their highly nutritious and organic content. Put simply, their quality can never be questioned.
What is fish food for aquaponics?
Aquaponics fish foods are deemed as the most stellar options for fish keepers and their aquatic pets. Such foods are not merely free of any GMO contents and purely organic but they are also formulated with special and unique ingredients that work wonderfully in nourishing your aquaponics plants and fish.
What is more, these feeds are precisely manufactured for most omnivorous fish such as koi, tilapia, carp, catfish, and more. They are uniquely formulated by expert aquaponics, organic pet food manufacturers, and aquaculture.
These products contain certified sheer organic agricultural ingredients or products that correspond to the national list of materials of NOP that are approved for organic agriculture production. Fish foods for aquaponics do not contain soy, fish meal, or GMOs.
Why do you need aquaponics fish food? (Benefits)
Fish and feed waste offer most of the nutrients needed by the plants in the aquaponics if the maximum percentage between daily fish feed inputs as well as the plant growing location is maintained. Hence, the fish feeds have to suffice both the plant and the fish’s nutritional needs in an aquaponics system.
It is worth noting that a properly monitored fish waste production scheme where the mineral, phosphorus, and nitrogen contents of fish diet are controlled and utilized provides a means of affecting the rates of nutrient accumulation, so this helps lessen the need for additional supplementation of nutrients.
Fundamentally, to maximize the cost-effectiveness and performance of aquaponics productions, your feeding schedules and fish diets must be discreetly outlined to provide the nutrients at the right time and appropriate level to complement plants, bacteria, and fish.
Thus, to accomplish this, a species-specific custom made aquaponics feeds can be maximized to fit the aquaponics system as a whole.
The use of aquaponics systems can offer fish keepers with several benefits that comprise of:
- Fish can be harvested as an additional revenue source or food source.
- You become well aware of the source of your food. You can pick the fish you prefer to use in the tanks.
- They do not contain chemicals or other toxic ingredients. Aquaponics is one great way to enjoy a natural and more organic way of growing fish and other food sources.
- You only need to use less water as compared to other food farming and conventional agricultural approaches.
- It allows growing food in any sized space.
- This system allows you to grow fish or food sources in small locations. Aquaponics can be constructed horizontally, vertically or stacked on top of one another.
- It is easier to come up with your aquaponics system because it does not matter whether you have a large-sized garden or small backyard.
- You can have a sustainable food source. Indeed, all the nutrients that the plants require come from the fish, so this is an organic fertilizing approach. Such a system simulates the natural ecosystem, which implies that the plants are organically grown, and the quality of the foods is more outstanding.
- This approach produces less waste. Any solids that are left behind in the fish tanks can be utilized as organic fertilizers for soil-based plants or can be added to the compost pile. Additionally, any damaged or unharvested plants could be composted or fed to the fish.
- It does not consume more time, unlike other agricultural methods. Besides the need to feed your fish tank pets every day, the aquaponics system appears to look after itself. This conveys that it is unnecessary to turn any soil, or water the plants. Such set-up is self-sufficient so it is not that high maintenance.
How to use?
Monitoring the aquaponics fish foods that you are feeding your omnivorous fish is regarded as one of the most indispensable routines that you would need to perform in your system’s environment. And, since your fish tank settlers supply the waste that the plants require, it is important to ensure that they are fed regularly.
There are several factors to look through when using fish food for aquaponics and these include:
- Come up with a feeding schedule. As much as possible, avoid giving your fish with excess amounts of foods as this could make the water and the rest of the system filthy. Keep an eye on the tank more often and make certain to clean the water as necessary.
If your pet fish do not consume all of the foods that you give them, then it is high time to remove the uneaten foods and try feeding them with fewer foods until they are consuming all the foods that you feed them.
- Take in mind that fish are more apt to consume 1.5% of their body weight daily. Thus, you could consider this ratio to assist you as you decide for the amount to feed them. You also need to take into account if they are still little fingerlings or already full-grown.
- What about the quality of the food you feed your fish tank residents? Toxins in the food would trickle down the vegetables and plants that you would eat. So, it is practical to figure out whether the fish you have are precisely omnivorous or plant food eaters.
Either way, all fish species seriously require fats, proteins, and carbohydrates just like humans. So, when you have finally decided which types of foods are the most suitable ones for your pet fish, select between store-purchased pellets, or growing the foods on your own, or both.
- Only feed your fish tank occupants with food amounts that they could finish between 5 to 10 minutes. And, see to it to remove the unconsumed foods right away and do not allow it to rot below the tank as this could foul the water and produce toxins and nasty smell.
Where to buy?
You can purchase fish foods for your aquaponics by visiting the nearest local fish, pet, or aquarium supply stores in your current place. It could be a little difficult to search for these types of foods for aquatic pets so it is highly suggested to refer to heavily stocked fish, pet, or aquarium supply stores to ensure that you can be provided with ample selections to pick from.
Moreover, there is another way of easily and conveniently finding such products and this is none other than shopping online. You can refer to highly trusted online shopping sites such as Amazon, PetSmart, Live Aquaria, Petco, and Petwarehouse. These sites oftentimes offer special promos, discounts, and freebies that you can avail of.
Besides the best shopping deals that you can enjoy when shopping online, these online shopping sites are deemed as some of the best places where you can find the most credible brands that are quite well-known in the fish feeding industry. With lots of options to consider, there is no way for you to end up buying faulty products for your finned friends.
The Most Excellent Fish Species for your Aquaponics System
As already mentioned, the aquaponics system pertains to a cutting-edge farming approach that utilizes fish-waste as an organic fertilizer for plants in a nutrient-enriched ecosystem.
The plants and nitrifying bacteria get rid of ammonia and other hazardous compounds from the water- this helps make the water safe and healthy for aquatic creatures to dwell in.
A broad range of omnivorous, herbivorous, and freshwater fish could be utilized in an aquaponics system.
Here are a few of the aquaponics fish based on the size of your system set-up, low maintenance, and sustainability:
This fish species is generally available and is capable of producing waste instantly. It is less pricey, hardy, and could thrive in diverse temperatures. However, goldfish prefer cooler water between 5- to 75-degree Fahrenheit. This creature can be a serene community fish if they are added with non-tropical and similar sized fish like the Zebra Danios.
- Mozambique Tilapia
This fish species is ideal for bigger scale systems. It grows rapidly and is easy to breed. Tilapia can thrive in warmer water temperatures between 65 by up to 85-degrees Fahrenheit.
You can harvest and eat it and is known for being an exceptional source of protein. Sure thing, growing fish that you can eat adds another element to your aquaponics set-up- you can enjoy consuming fresh fish and fresh produce – all of which can be sourced from your home, garden or backyard.
Indeed, breeding is not a hassle, and fish could begin reproducing at roughly 7 to 8 months. Essentially, one of the easiest means to get a pair is to allow a minimum of 5 to 6 fish to grow up together and create their pairs.
- Tropical fish
This is a fun and awesome option to utilize in your aquaponics set-up. You can select from tetras, suckermouth fish, clown loaches, mollies, and cichlids. See to it to put a heater in the tank to keep them more comfortable.
The ideal tank size for the common suckerfish is 150-gallons or more since they could instantly grow up to 2 feet and tends to become aggressive. You can consider Albino Bushynose Pleco if you have smaller tanks- they tend to grow at a maximum of 5 inches and they also execute an excellent job of getting rid of algae.
This fish species dwells excellently in the aquaponics system and they add lovely colors to the tank. It is edible, can be tough to prepare and are extremely bony. This fish has a longer lifespan and can combat parasites well.
In the same way, it could resist a wide pH range and can be fine at 35° up to 85° Fahrenheit temperatures. Since it can grow roughly 12 to 36 inches, they can live comfortably in a 200-gallon plus tank.
You can transform koi ponds into stunning aquaponics set-up and enhance the water quality.
- Channel Catfish
This is a practical option if you have bigger scale systems because this fish species is adaptable. It grows instantly, can be harvested to eat and comes with superb food conversion ration. Moreover, it is rich in Vitamin D.
Not to mention, it thrives in water 75° to 86° Fahrenheit temperature; even so, it could also tolerate 41°–93° Fahrenheit temperatures. Catfish can dwell comfortably in 250-gallon plus tanks since it can grow to a size of between 40 by up to 50 pounds.
This fish species can fight off parasites and many sorts of ailments, and most importantly, it can tolerate wide swings in temperature and pH.
Be reminded that when selecting a fish species for your aquaponics set-up, it is critical to pick the climatic conditions that are identical to your location.
How to make do-it-yourself aquaponics fish foods?
If you are interested in making your version of aquaponics fish foods, then you can start by finding worms and insects, or if you prefer; you could grow them yourself- this is to provide your fish tank pets with sufficient amounts of protein they need to support their overall health.
In their natural habitat, omnivorous fish would go after flies, crickets, cockroaches, insect larvae, fish eggs, tiny crustaceans, and other kinds of worms such as Red wigglers, earthworms as well as black worms.
On the other hand, for aquatic pets that are mostly plant-feeders, you could grow their food in aquaponics tray. You can grow elodea and water lettuce in your aquaponics grow beds, but see to it that you dry them off before giving them to your fish. Another renowned option is duckweed as this comes with roughly 30 to 40% protein and it also contains other essential nutrients.
Apart from this, spirulina is another excellent alternative. This refers to the same algae that are available in health food stores. Spirulina is highly recognized for being enriched with vital nutrients, minerals, vitamins, selenium, protein, zinc, and manganese. Take note that this would only thrive in warm temperatures so it is highly suggested to consider growing it in small heated tanks or aquariums.
Meanwhile, fish also prefer lots of vegetables and fruits and you may grow these in your aquaponics garden. You can go for grapes, kale, apples, watercress, and lettuce.
And, if you’re harvesting edible fish, make certain that you use food products that are approved by USDA and are certified as non-GMO products. Truth is this is not solely for the overall wellness of the fish but also for ensuring human health and consumption.
A Final Reminder
It is essential to feed your fish twice per day. Do not overfeed and don’t allow the food to touch the underneath portion of the tank. Take in mind that unconsumed foods intervene with the water quality of your eco-cycle and too much of these would become toxic to your finned buddies.
What is more, fish species that could easily adapt to the changes in temperature are the most outstanding options, and the consistency of the temperature is the best for any type of system.
Lastly, it is a must to add fish gradually in your aquaponics system because adding them too quickly could rapidly elevate the levels of ammonia and these could pose hazards to your fish tank pets.
Hopefully, you have learned some valuable information about how to look for the best fish food for aquaponics and how to properly look after your system’s environment in this article. Keep in mind that finding the perfect balance between all of the components is the secret to having a healthy and productive aquaponics system.
Moreover, the amount of money you can set aside from purchasing fish foods from the market would largely depend on the size of your aquaponics system and how excellently you adhere to the principals of the aquaponics system’s maintenance. And, to come up with a successful aquaponics system, it is essential to understand the ideal ratios between the fish tank and the grow bed.
Lastly, plan a schedule for how frequently you would feed your fish tank pets. Giving them excess food amounts could contaminate the water and the entire system. Keep track of the tank more often and make certain that you clean the water as necessary. If your finned friends do not consume all the foods you feed them, it is vital to remove it and just feed them with less quantity until they are consuming all the foods that you provide them.
By carefully comparing the aquaponics fish food products reviewed in this post, you can lessen the burden of picking and shopping for the most suitable fish foods for your aquatic pets. Check the ingredients, pros, and cons; so you won’t have any regrets later.