This is a question I hear from many first-time pond owners because there is a lot of confusion around the topic of feeding fish in wintertime. With most pets, you feed them consistently regardless of the temperature or time of year. However, when you have fish that live outside, you have to take a different approach.
I’ve talked about this before, but it never hurts to reiterate, especially because so many questions seem to surround it.When temperatures get cold enough, you need to stop feeding your fish completely. Yes, that’s right. Your fish don’t need any food to survive when temperatures are really cold.
How is that possible? Well, as previous posts have discussed, fish require different kinds of nutrition at different times of the year. For example, when temperatures begin to consistently hover around 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit, you are supposed to start giving your fish cold weather fish food. Then, when temperatures hit about 50 degrees Fahrenheit, you should stop feeding your fish completely.
At those temperatures, it is simply too difficult for your fish’s digestive systems to function. Their metabolisms are almost completely slowed down, and their bodies are in a semi-hibernation state. Any food you would give them at that point would do more harm than good because they would have difficulty processing it.
Now, if you hit one of those unseasonably warm stretches of weather that sometimes occur during winter, you can give your fish a little bit of cold weather fish food to tide them over during that time. However, temperatures will inevitably drop again, so you want to still feed sparingly during any periods of semi-warmness.
If you have other questions about cold weather fish food or general winter pond care, please contact one of our pond supplies professionals today.