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  1. #1
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai smartin's Avatar
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    to what temp should you feed your fish

    My first winter guys so a bit unsure on things, my pond temp is 11.9 this morning, i am feeding every other day on coppens wheat germ, to what temp should you feed them to before stopping completely ? is wheatgerm sustainable for them between now and stopping feeding, feels like i should be feeding them something substantial to aid body fat to see them through the winter months, I doubt wheat germ does that ? getting a bit conscious not its getting colder, god knows what I will be like when its minus figures Steve.

    Anyone feeding there fish on some sinking winter pellets ? I think mine would prefer it to floating as still quite spooked about the polycarb covers....



  2. #2
    My thoughts on why it's important to feed koi whenever they are actively seeking food, regardless of the temperature:
    Winter feeding

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  4. #3
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai smartin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manky Sanke View Post
    My thoughts on why it's important to feed koi whenever they are actively seeking food, regardless of the temperature:
    Winter feeding
    Thank you MS, a good read which has given me a different view to this matter, sounds like you are advocating the wheatgerm food over any other for the winter, is this purely down to being easily digestible in cold conditions ? thanks for your help..... Steve

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  6. #4
    Mine are still scoffing like theres no tomorrow, pond is about 10 degrees in the afternoons


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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  8. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by smartin View Post
    Thank you MS, a good read which has given me a different view to this matter, sounds like you are advocating the wheatgerm food over any other for the winter, is this purely down to being easily digestible in cold conditions ? thanks for your help..... Steve

    Yes, wheatgerm is far more suitable because it's more easily digested at low temperatures than protein. You could feed a high protein food at low temperatures and it won't rot in their gut, that's an Internet myth. However, the protein in it won't be fully digested, if at all. It will travel through the gut at the normal rate and be excreted almost completely undigested​ so it will be wasted and, although it won't do them any harm, it won't do them any good either.

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  10. #6
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Manky Sanke View Post

    Yes, wheatgerm is far more suitable because it's more easily digested at low temperatures than protein. You could feed a high protein food at low temperatures and it won't rot in their gut, that's an Internet myth. However, the protein in it won't be fully digested, if at all. It will travel through the gut at the normal rate and be excreted almost completely undigested​ so it will be wasted and, although it won't do them any harm, it won't do them any good either.
    This is really good to read.... Its exactly as I thought, but hard to be certain without your authoritative confirmation simply because everyone says not to feed.

    But it begs the question, why do Koi food labels advise to stop feeding below certain temps (which vary packet to packet from 5C to 12C)?

    Surely they want to sell more food, so what research determines their advice?


    Personally I much prefer feeding live food where possible in winter Months to mimic natural feeding and to avoid the risk of man made foods that won't break down in cold temps, so will go on an earthworm hunt every couple of weeks and the Koi gobble them up. When too lazy to dig I throw in chopped mussels which up to now haven't caused any noticeable problems.

    Feeding earthworms to Fancy Goldfish through the colder Months almost certainly helps condition them for breeding in the spring. Don't know if the same applies to Koi as I'm yet to see any spawnings.
    Last edited by RS2OOO; 17-11-2019 at 04:07 PM.

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  12. #7
    Hi

    Does anyone still feed brown bread at winter temps?

    KevT

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  14. #8
    Extreme Koi Member Rank = Supreme Champion john1's Avatar
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    Hi Kev,

    I dont but that is just me.
    John

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  16. #9
    Hi John

    I feed Hikari wheatgerm - my fish eat the granary bread first then go back for the Hikari, must taste good - I've never tried the pellets, but granary bread with sunflower seeds is my favorite and if the Koi have the same taste buds as we do then I can see why they like it, I only give them a quarter slice at a time, I've heard people putting honey on the bread, I'm sorry the honey is all mine.

    Kevt

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  18. #10
    Extreme Koi Member Rank = Supreme Champion john1's Avatar
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    Cant see it doing any harm if they enjoy it Kev and it is a soft food.
    Mine arnt feeding at all now but if they come up then they will get some.
    John

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  20. #11
    Senior Member Rank = Gosai Sim's Avatar
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    I have always fed them if they want it, then when they stop feeding keep an eye on them if they start looking give them a little.
    The smaller koi seem alot more active even after the larger ones have stopped.
    I am noticing this at the moment the smaller koi are scrabbling for the food the larger koi just come up and eat a little but the biggest are not interested now.
    Pond is about 10 at the moment.

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  22. #12
    Senior Member Rank = Gosai Sim's Avatar
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    I do feed them brown bread in the spring with the wheat germ I think it helps gets there appetite back.

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  24. #13
    Senior Member Rank = Mature Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sim View Post
    I have always fed them if they want it, then when they stop feeding keep an eye on them if they start looking give them a little.
    The smaller koi seem alot more active even after the larger ones have stopped.
    I am noticing this at the moment the smaller koi are scrabbling for the food the larger koi just come up and eat a little but the biggest are not interested now.
    Pond is about 10 at the moment.
    That's interesting mate wonder why that is and if it happens to every ones koi size range

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    Johnathan

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  26. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by RS2OOO View Post
    This is really good to read.... Its exactly as I thought, but hard to be certain without your authoritative confirmation simply because everyone says not to feed.

    But it begs the question, why do Koi food labels advise to stop feeding below certain temps (which vary packet to packet from 5C to 12C)?


    Surely they want to sell more food, so what research determines their advice?


    Personally I much prefer feeding live food where possible in winter Months to mimic natural feeding and to avoid the risk of man made foods that won't break down in cold temps, so will go on an earthworm hunt every couple of weeks and the Koi gobble them up. When too lazy to dig I throw in chopped mussels which up to now haven't caused any noticeable problems.

    Feeding earthworms to Fancy Goldfish through the colder Months almost certainly helps condition them for breeding in the spring. Don't know if the same applies to Koi as I'm yet to see any spawnings.


    Manufacturers have to give advice/instructions about how to use their product and food manufacturers are no different. The quoted temperatures are probably due to the protein content.

    At 5C the natural appetite will have reduced to nothing so it would be pointless trying to feed anything even if that brand has been formulated to be easily digestible at low temperatures.

    Since protein is less and less easily digested as the temperature falls then, depending on the protein content, it may be better not to feed a particular food below certain temperatures so stopping feeding that particular brand at 12 C may be the correct advice. However, that wouldn't prevent the hobbyist switching to a lower protein content food and continuing to offer food when the fish are actively looking for it.

    I've just submitted the second part of my series of articles on nutrition for the BKKS magazine which is due for publication in the next week or so. I can't quote extensively from it here but I can post snippets from it which I frequently post on the subject of feeding in winter.

    In winter in a natural lake, the availability of high protein sources of food such as insects is restricted so fish survive on lower protein sources such as scraps of plants and they have evolved the range of enzymes that allow them to digest this at the appropriate temperature.

    It's a myth that fish are too stupid to know when the water is too cold for them too digest food. The enzymes that control the metabolism of food and the appetite are linked so that they match, regardless of the temperature.

    Metabolising food consists of two main processes; Anabolism and Catabolism.

    Catabolism is the breakdown of the complex molecules in the food into simpler ones. Energy is released in this process.

    Anabolism makes complex molecules from these simpler ones which can be used to power the creature and build body mass. These processes require energy.

    Anabolic and catabolic processes work together with the energy from catabolism providing the energy for anabolism. If you feed higher protein food, it wont harm them but it will be excreted almost completely undigested so, although it wont actually harm them, it wont benefit them either.

    I've always been in favour of feeding earthworms as an initial food to feed in spring as the temperature begins to rise because they contain the range of enzymes and gut bacteria and will top up the koi digestive system with any that have declined over the winter. They will also provide the correct range of amino acids.



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  28. #15
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Manky,

    Thank you for the detailed reply.

    Really appreciate your input and knowledge and probably speak for all of us that its a real privilege to read what you've got to say.

    Reminds me of a fella called Joe Smartt, you may have heard of him. In the fancy goldfish scene he was the ultimate authority on breeding and genetics and I don't think anyone in that scene has come close to freely offering what he did.

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  30. #16
    Senior Member Rank = Mature Champion Ajm's Avatar
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    Second that rs . All that knowledge and the willingness to share and help great man with a great mind

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    Johnathan

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  32. #17
    Extreme Koi Member Rank = Supreme Champion john1's Avatar
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    Well said guys,top man Manky Sanky allways here to help.
    John

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  34. #18
    Nah! Don't you believe it. I'm just quite good at making up technical looking stuff as I go along.

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  36. #19
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion freddyboy's Avatar
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    Agree. Learnt a lot of syd. He is the man in my book.
    Writes it so everyone can understand it.
    Fred

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