In the animal kingdom, there are only a few species that grow continuously while they’re alive. For that reason, Koi are considered the biggest fish to be kept as pets. They can reach lengths of up to 36 inches in ideal conditions. A good, stress-free environment for Koi means a steady climate and relatively stable water temperature, clean water with lots of oxygen, and safe surroundings. Keeping your fish from stress will let it maintain its strong appetite and thus keep growing in their lifetime. The living conditions and proper Koi feeding therefore has as much to do with their growth as their genetics.
Feeding Koi entails much more than dumping fish-food in your pond each day. One has to make sure there’s just enough food to keep the Koi from competing with each other which is another source of stress. Overfeeding can also be a problem since it can pollute the water and make your fish sick. It’s also important to make sure that you’re feeding your Koi the right-sized pellets. This holds true especially when you have varying sizes of fish in your pond. Feed your Koi a pellet size that the smallest fish in your collection can eat. Click do you need to feed your koi fish during the colder months for more info.
Koi pellets come in two types, those that float and those that sink. While sinking pellets might be the best for these type of fish (bottom-feeders), letting them feed solely on sinking pellets will hinder you from properly viewing them from above. Floating pellets will let you get close with your fish and better enjoy their colors and patterns. Eating close to your presence will also let your Koi associate you with food. This means in time, they will even learn to eat from your hand!
Unless you live in the tropics where the climate and water temperature don’t vary that much, it’s important to know that your Koi’s metabolism goes down as their environment gets colder. This means your fish don’t need that much food during the colder months. All they need for winter in fact is a supplemental diet of low-protein food every two days. Feeding them rich food when the water is at low temperatures might cause digestion problems because the food can stay in their stomachs for too long and then rot.
There is a large variety of possible nutrition sources for different phases of Koi feeding. These range from fiber-rich fruits and grains which are low in protein to high-protein pellets that include color enhancers for your Koi’s pigmentation. The latter are ideal for warm summer months when the metabolic rates of your pets are at its highest and their appetites are strong.