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View Full Version : Feeding mbuna...?



smcurry83
04-05-2008, 01:51 AM
My stocking list is in my signature....

With that being said, here's the question: I've read about people putting different vegetables in there tanks with other types of fish. Can you do the same with mbuna? I was thinking about lettuce, cucumbers, etc. What about fruits too? (seems like that might be bad due to the acid in most fruits) I think it would be neat to feed them something like this once a week or so......

smcurry83
04-05-2008, 01:53 AM
Oh yeah, right now I'm feeding them a home made mixture of pellets, flakes and blood worms during the week. Saturdays they get brine shrimp. And Sundays they fast....

sailor
04-05-2008, 03:11 AM
Oh yeah, right now I'm feeding them a home made mixture of pellets, flakes and blood worms during the week. Saturdays they get brine shrimp. And Sundays they fast....

Stop feeding the blood worms, it can cause a bloat. Their digestive systems are not designed to deal with blood worms or other meaty proteins. They will eat the blood worms like crazy but they do a lot of harm. I feed my malawi cichlids strictly nls. Between a diet of nls and religious weekly water changes I have gone from 1 inch fry bought in Aug 07 to breeding fish by the end of Dec 07.

smcurry83
04-05-2008, 12:26 PM
Out of a cup of food that I've mixxed up, only a teaspoon or two are blood worms. Hopefully that's not enough to hurt them. Thanks for the heads up though, I'll have to remake their food today.

RainMan
04-05-2008, 01:34 PM
My stocking list is in my signature....

With that being said, here's the question: I've read about people putting different vegetables in there tanks with other types of fish. Can you do the same with mbuna? I was thinking about lettuce, cucumbers, etc. What about fruits too? (seems like that might be bad due to the acid in most fruits) I think it would be neat to feed them something like this once a week or so......

yeah... blood worms is disasterous to their digestive system.

Flakes can be a real mess and require more clean up. I completely stopped using them. They break up and disperse throughout the tank too fast.... and end up clogging up your filter and dirtying your gravel.

I have fed some vegetables in the past... I read that feeding peas ocassionly is really good for their digestion. Thawed frozen peas work great. I take about one or two peas and place them in a container with fish water until they are thawed out.... then shuck the inside of the pea out of the shell and they gobble it up. However, it is totally unecessary if you get a good quality cichlid pellet.

NLS (new life spectrum) is good food... you can buy it in a variety of sizes too. I have used this with great results. There are others too.... but, nls has been proven successful by many cichlid enthusiasts. Other choices are hikari bio gold... I started using aqueon when my lfs stopped carrying nls. It seems like a quality food (prepared by the same company that makes nls).

smcurry83
04-06-2008, 01:03 PM
So what about zukini and cucumbers and the like? I also saw a tank at the lfs that looked like it had an orange or lemon slice in it. The fish were tearing it up!

RainMan
04-06-2008, 02:04 PM
Cleanup is the first problem with veggies. These things break down and cause nasty problems to your biosystem. Just keep that in mind. Do not let any vegies sit around in the tank.

Most of these veggies do not supply enough vitamins to sustain the cichlid diets. Only a few vegatables like Peas and a few others (i'ld have to look up) contain some of the vitamins needed. Most do not come close to replacing the nutritional value of manufactured cichlid foods. cucumbers are 90% water and the rest is starch... so, I wouldn't even bother with it... zuchinni might be a little better... but not much.

I would never put anything containing high amounts of sugar in my tank... that is fuel for bacteria. I have absolutely never heard of anyone feeding orange or lemon slice... that seems obsurd. Do cichlids need vitamin c and foods containing acidic acid? I doubt it. Maybe I'm wrong.. but, i'm going on experience and a lot of reading.

Anyway you look at it... veggies are a treat... do not try to make them staple. It's more work then it is worth.... IMO.

smcurry83
04-06-2008, 04:43 PM
I definitely wouldn't try to substitute anything I've thought up for a staple diet of normal fish food. Just looking for something, like you said, a treat.

I did read this though and thought it was interesting. What's your take on it?

http://www.aquariumlife.net/projects/diy-fish-food/112.asp

Dixie
04-06-2008, 05:30 PM
I have frozen peas, some sliced zuchinni and sliced carrots that I have blanched and froze for my cichlids. Sometimes I give them a piece of romain lettuce too. I only do this as a treat and right before a water change as it can make a mess of the tank. Don't leave the uneaten veggies in there very long either.

I read that article. I have only used NLS so I don't have any experience with other prepared foods. That receipe sounds interesting and I do like to cook. Maybe if it doesn't get any negitive feedback by someone with more knowlege than I have I might try it. I will copy it down in my fish notes notebook lol. Thanks for sharing it with us.

smcurry83
04-06-2008, 06:13 PM
So I tried cucmbers out of curiosity. The bumble bees were tearing it up as soon as it hit the water! The yellows eventually started in on it and the auratus followed soon after. The kenyi only ate the small pieces that fell off and were floating around. I'd say they all liked it a lot. I only left it in for about 5 minutes or so and then removed what I could. If anything was left in the tank it was too small to see.

Yeah, it's probably not the most nutrient rich food, but it made a good snack!!!

Dixie
04-06-2008, 08:25 PM
I can't remember if you have a pleco or not but they like the veggies too. I've heard of some people leaving the veggies in the tank over night but I don't like to leave them in there any longer than 15 minutes. If you think about it, our food left out at room temp. for longer than 20 minutes is considered unsafe & tank temp is in that range so I don't chance it.

smcurry83
06-13-2008, 12:40 PM
So after a while, I've found that the cichlids and plecos really like cucumber, zucini, peas and romaine lettuce. I only feed them one of the first three a few times a week at night. (mostly for the plecos, but everyone else always ends up eating some too) I was fasting them on Sundays and then started to feed them peas one time on Sunday. I figuerd if fasting and peas were both good for the digestive system, that feeding them one time, with a small amount of peas, one day a week was probably good too.

smcurry83
06-13-2008, 12:43 PM
Another question that I had...

So are blood worms bad for cichlids as a staple, or also a once a week/month type of treat? I could see where feeding them blood worms every day could be detrimental to them; but what about once a week or month? I haven't been feeding them blood worms anymore, I'm just curious...

Dixie
06-13-2008, 01:24 PM
I've never used them and can't say for sure but I've read that they shouldn't be used period.