Feeding the fish in the aquarium, and also shrimps if kept, is one of the most pleasurable parts of keeping a seawater aquarium. This is probably because of the direct interaction between the aquarist and fish. Some fish can become so tame that they will rise and take food from the fingers. This heart warming trick is often done by cleaner shrimps as well – in fact place a hand in the aquarium and they will often climb on the hand to see if they can find a morsel to eat. Movements outside the aquarium can cause the fish to respond and hang about the usual feeding area in the hope of food. This latter should be resisted, the fish are not starving, it is an automatic response after a while in the aquarium.
This brings me on to an important point. The action of feeding is, unfortunately, one that can bring trouble, particularly with newcomers to the hobby. Overfeeding! It is easily done, and must be avoided. Overfeeding can upset the water parameters. Nitrate (NO3) and phosphate (PO4) are mainly introduced through food. So pollution through overfeeding should be avoided. If the aquarium is fitted with a DSB (deep sand bed), or a denitrator, or has algae growing, the problem can be minimised. However, whatever the equipment, overfeeding is bad. It goes without saying that the fish also need enough food. [Read more]