Did you know the time of year determines what foods you should offer koi and other pond fish for proper nutrition? Even foods with excellent nutritional profiles may not be the right choice depending on the time of year. Discover what foods to offer – and when – to ensure the overall health and longevity of your koi and other pond fish!
Why so Many Different Foods?
Koi and other pond fish require different foods at different times of the year. As cold-blooded animals, fish rely on the temperature of their environment to regulate digestion and other metabolic processes. In other words, water temperature determines what foods pond fish are able to digest to receive the nutrition they require. Improper food offerings can result in potential malnutrition, slow, stunted growth and even fish loss due to undigested food decaying within their digestive tract.
Wheat Germ Diets: Nutrition during cooler temperatures
Wheat germ diets address the slowed metabolism pond fish experience during periods of cool water temperatures. These easy-to-digest foods provide necessary nutrition without compromising fish health or pond water quality. Most wheat germ formulations are fortified with vitamins and minerals to help support immune health and developed as low-waste formulations to minimize impact on pond water quality. As an easy reminder of when to offer wheat germ diets, they are commonly referred to as "spring and fall" diets. In general, offer wheat germ diets when water temperatures are below 60°F.
Staple Diets: Daily nutrition during warmer temperatures
Staple diets offer balanced nutrition suitable for all pond fish. Staple diets provide quality protein, vitamins, and minerals, forming the core daily diet of koi and other pond fish. It provides excellent nutrition and can be offered throughout the summer pond season. In general, offer staple diets when water temperatures are above 60°F.
Growth Diets: Nutrition for Active, Developing Fish During Warmer Temperatures
Growth diets contain higher levels of protein and nutrition for extra energy your fish need as they become more active during the summer. Growth diets provide the added nutrition required by young, rapidly growing, or spawning fish and is a great choice for the healthy development of juvenile pond fish. In general, offer growth diets when water temperatures are above 60°F.
Color-Enhancing Diets: Nutrition for Vibrant Coloration During Warmer Temperatures
Color-enhancing diets help develop natural vibrant coloration in koi and other pond fish. Ingredients such as spirulina, carotenoids, and other natural color-enhancing elements help bring out vivid coloration for gorgeous results you can see. Color-enhancing diets may be offered individually or in conjunction with staple or growth diets to optimize koi health and beauty. In general, offer color-enhancing diets when water temperatures are above 60°F.
Professional Diets: Premium Nutrition During Warmer Temperatures
Professional diets boast superior protein content and ingredients selected for conditioning and developing impressive show-size koi. This unique formulation promotes balanced, accelerated growth and overall healthy koi development. If you are raising championship koi or just wanting to impress fellow koi-keepers, then professional diets are the choice for you. In general, offer professional diets when water temperatures are above 60°F.
Always rely on pond water temperature, NOT air temperature, when adjusting diet for koi and other pond fish. A pond thermometer provides accurate measurement of water temperature, ensuring proper transition of different pond fish foods.