Hot Feeding Tips

Summer is the most enjoyable water gardening season and the time to watch for potential problems caused by high water temperatures during extreme or extended hot periods.

It's important to feed food that is easily digestible so fish benefit from fully absorbing the nutrients. Fish that actively seek food should be fed 1-3 times a day. To ensure they've consumed all of their food, feed small amounts at each feeding in the summer heat. This will prevent uneaten food from decomposing at the high temperatures and polluting your pond water. If your fish show no interest in food, don't feed them!

The solubility of oxygen depends on temperature. In the winter, oxygen readily dissolves into cold water, readily available for fish. In the summer, as the water temperature rises oxygen becomes increasingly insoluble. When fish feed in extreme summer heat, their movement also uses more oxygen, which is a problem if there isn't a sufficient oxygen supply in the water.

It is best to feed in the morning?the coolest time of day. Also, take steps to increase water movement, such as ensuring there is good water circulation, add a fountain to aerate water, and add oxygenating plants.

The golden rule? Feed only as much as fish will consume within five minutes. Fish eat what they need to survive in various conditions. As the water temperature rises from 77°F and up, fish will consume less food in a given time.

Brett Fogle is the owner of MacArthur Water Gardens and several
other pond-related websites including
and He also publishes a free monthly
newsletter called PondStuff! with a reader circulation of over
9,000. To sign up for the free newsletter and receive our FREE
'New Pond Owners Guide' visit MacArthur Water Gardens today!

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