Cichlids of Victoria

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 Post subject: Feeding question
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:05 pm 
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I have some feeding questions regarding my victorians. For background...I usually feed 2x a day....my standard food for most of my cichlid tanks has always been spirulina flake (Nutrafin Max 40% spirulina) in the AM and then NLS 1mm sinking pellets in the late afternoon. I fast all but the babies one day a week and one day a week I feed some live food ... usually a very sparing amount of mysis shrimp. I also feed veggies (spinach, zucchini) the day before the frozen food feeding (the mysis).

1st...Paralabidochromis chromogynos juvies
They live in my 125G tank. Water parameters are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 5 nitrates, ph 8.0, temp 79.4. I do not add buffers of any type. I have been doing water changes every 5 days at 40-50%, going to stretch that to 7 days and 50% and see if my nitrates hold

I was concerned about feeding the spirulina when I first got these guys as I saw their diet type was carnivore but my readings seemed to indicate that the spirulina was still ok and good for them so I did not change that but I did add some cichlid flakes (Omega) to the spirulina mix to boost the carnivore side of the flakes and I have not feed veggies to this tank.

My P chromogynos some of which are closer to 2 inches in length....seem to bloat a bit when I feed them NLS 1mm cichlid sinking pellets. By bloat I mean their bellies distend to the point that it squares their anal area...they look like the bloat pics. I have considered that maybe I am feeding them too much in pellets (I don't measure) but I just feed a couple of pinches and there are 16 of these guys. None hits the substrate and food is gone in a few seconds. No leftovers. Poo looks normal, no white stringy stuff or anything like that.

In trying to figure out what was going on I tried just feeding the flakes 2x a day. When I do this I get no belly bloat.

So my question is this...is the belly bloat simply a byproduct of the pellets? If so is it a food problem or is it a symptom of something else? Is the diet I'm feeding OK for these guys? No one seems ill. I did lose one fish about three weeks ago and I'm not sure why (other than they had come out of quarantine and gone into the main tank for a bit, so maybe a stress factor for it). I never saw any symptoms of anything really...just one day ok, the next missing and found it dead.

2nd - Neochromis rufocaudalis (Herbivore)
They live in one of my 55G tanks. Water parameters are 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 5-10 nitrates, ph 8.0, temp 78.5. I do not add buffers of any type. I have been doing water changes every 5 days at 50%.

As these are still babies I'm simply feeding them the mix of the spirulina and cichlid flakes at this time. So my question is for future feeding of them. I plan on adding in the pellets over the next month, probably by crushing them and gradually substituting them for one of the flake feedings (like the afternoon). After fully incorporated I will more than likely start making the flake mix more and more spirulina until no cichlid flake is incorporated. Should this be ok for them?

And do N. rufocaudalis like veggies too? Being herbivores I would think so but I didn't really see veggies being fed alot when I reviewed the "what do you feed" thread...and what about live/frozen foods? Any? None?

Looking for recommendations as for right now everyone seems to be doing well on the flake mix.

Thanks for your help and input :)


Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:05 pm
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 Post subject: Re: Feeding question
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 3:43 pm 
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cichlid-gal wrote:
I have some feeding questions regarding my victorians. For background...I usually feed 2x a day....my standard food for most of my cichlid tanks has always been spirulina flake (Nutrafin Max 40% spirulina) in the AM and then NLS 1mm sinking pellets in the late afternoon. I fast all but the babies one day a week and one day a week I feed some live food ... usually a very sparing amount of mysis shrimp. I also feed veggies (spinach, zucchini) the day before the frozen food feeding (the mysis).

1st...Paralabidochromis chromogynos juvies I have been doing water changes every 5 days at 40-50%, going to stretch that to 7 days and 50% and see if my nitrates hold

I was concerned about feeding the spirulina when I first got these guys as I saw their diet type was carnivore but my readings seemed to indicate that the spirulina was still ok and good for them so I did not change that but I did add some cichlid flakes (Omega) to the spirulina mix to boost the carnivore side of the flakes and I have not feed veggies to this tank.

My P chromogynos ....seem to bloat a bit when I feed them NLS 1mm cichlid sinking pellets. By bloat I mean their bellies distend to the point that it squares their anal area...they look like the bloat pics. I have considered that maybe I am feeding them too much in pellets (I don't measure) but I just feed a couple of pinches and there are 16 of these guys.

In trying to figure out what was going on I tried just feeding the flakes 2x a day. When I do this I get no belly bloat.

So my question is this...is the belly bloat simply a byproduct of the pellets? If so is it a food problem or is it a symptom of something else?

2nd - Neochromis rufocaudalis (Herbivore)I have been doing water changes every 5 days at 50%.

And do N. rufocaudalis like veggies too? Being herbivores I would think so but I didn't really see veggies being fed alot when I reviewed the "what do you feed" thread...and what about live/frozen foods? Any? None?


That's a lot of water changes when your nitrates are that low.

Yes the bellies will look very full when you feed pellets. I've never worried about it and I've never lost a fish due to bloat in over 30 years.

I do keep all my Neochromis on a mostly spirulina diet. I've fed veggies to my mbuna but never tried anything but Romaine lettuce with my vics.

Kevin

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Tue Oct 30, 2012 3:43 pm
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 Post subject: Re: Feeding question
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 3:50 pm 
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if you are feeding nls you should be good. they are just full bellies.

I used to feed the same diet as you, spirulina and nls. never had a problem. I have gone away from flake for the time being, but it has always been good to me.

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 Post subject: Re: Feeding question
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:25 pm 
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Thanks guys...

and yes Kevin...I realized maybe we were changing water too much on the 125G when I tested after change and got the 5ppm. This is our 1st big tank so we always think in terms of the smaller tanks and the need for more water changes.

As for the 55G, I had it on the 5 day schedule because these seemed to be babies still and was a little leary to push out to the 7 days thinking they need more water changes. But my nitrates in that tank are a little higher 10ppm is after water change so I think its ok at every 5 days for now. We had only been running an AC110 and a Marineland 200 on that tank and just added a Fluval 206 from another tank (about 3 weeks ago) that had a filter replaced so I think when that filter builds up its bioload (and I know its small but I have a 306 coming in and at that time I'll switch the bio over and then run for a month and pull the 200) we will be able to push those water changes out to more like once a week. And babies like fresh water I think right? ...if not, let me know please.

Thanks again guys :)


Tue Oct 30, 2012 6:25 pm
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