Backyard Aquaponics

Tilapia do not like their food
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Author:  Seppeo [ Aug 22nd, '16, 22:17 ]
Post subject:  Tilapia do not like their food

So yeah, the title is pretty self explanatory. I have been feeding my tilapia a pellet food for cichlids. They used to go crazy about it and devour it within minutes.

Im still feeding the same amount yet it takes them much longer for them to finish it. Like 5 minutes before vs a few hours now.

I thought something might be wrong with my water values. But the free ammonia is 0.006, which is near perfect and the lowest value ive reached in my system. So ammonia = ruled out. Temperature = 27 c = optimal
PH = 7.70 = lower than ever aswell.

I was thinking oxygen might be low in the system. Yet that doesnt stroke with the fact that when I feed them dried waterflea (daphnia) there crazy pig like feeding returns. I dont see any gasping for air at the surface either.

I havent fed them any black soldier fly larvae this week and more pellets. So my hypothesis was: the bsfl supplement something to the diet that the pellet doesnt, making them want something else than the pellet?

Looking forward to some replies!


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Author:  scotty435 [ Aug 23rd, '16, 01:17 ]
Post subject:  Re: Tilapia do not like their food

I would say that fish generally prefer to get live or natural foods and sometimes after you feed them these they don't want to eat the pellets. That's one possibility, here are a few others but some may not apply to you.

The food has gone rancid - more likely with high protein fish chows like cichlid feed but this seems unlikely since you're probably buying in small amounts.

They just got sick of this feed. I notice my fish (bluegill and catfish) get sick of some things if I feed it to them too much. Other things I could feed them and they never get sick of them. Feed training doesn't make them prefer pellets it just gets them to eat them. If they know you're going to throw something they like better in the tank, they might wait for that.

The feed has changed since the last batch you bought.

The water temp has fallen and they are off the feed unless given something they really like. I could feed worms year round but other types of feed they won't take or are less enthusiastic about when it's colder. Might be movement inducing a strike but they seem to really like worms :dontknow: .

Maybe they are eating something that's growing in the tank and they don't need as much but will still take the really good stuff. Tilapia have gill rakers and can eat algae among other things.

You may want to check your nitrites if you haven't but I don't think this is the problem since they feed well on some things.

Hope this helps :dontknow:

Author:  Seppeo [ Aug 23rd, '16, 14:17 ]
Post subject:  Re: Tilapia do not like their food

Thanks for your reply scotty, gave me some food for thought.

Feed is new and not rancid, water temps are constant at optimal levels. No algae are growing in the system, which is due to the tilapia eating them I reckon but that cannot be the reason.

So I guess they are just spoiled tilapias who prefer bsfl. Might need to source another pellet feed. The one im using right now should be fine, 36% protein but maybe low on vitamins and other essentials.

Ive notice everyone on here is using the purina aquamax feed. Looking to buy that feed but havent found it yet.

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Author:  Asia-Off-Grid [ Aug 23rd, '16, 16:56 ]
Post subject:  Re: Tilapia do not like their food

Seppeo wrote:
So I guess they are just spoiled tilapias who prefer bsfl.

It's like two kittens I had some time back. They had, mainly, rice as their main food supply at first. When I got them, I began feeding them steak tips and tuna. A while later, my helper (maid) decided she would give them rice. They both turned their noses up to that. No more rice. :)

We are about to start feeding our Tilapia BSFL. We will only use them to supplement their main source - Duckweed. I do not want to get them spoiled on BSLF. They may go on a hunger strike!

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