Feeding your neon tetras is one of the caretaking activities you must do to keep them healthy and alive. How often you should feed your neon tetras also matters a lot as an unhealthy feeding routine can be dangerous to your pet.
So, how often do you feed neon tetras? Feeding your neon tetras from 2 – 4 times a day would the most ideal. This is because neon tetras are opportunistic feeders in the wild. Thus, feeding them multiple times mimics their natural feeding process. How often you feed them will most likely depend on how much you feed them each time.
There is more to how often you should feed your aquarium pets and how to know if they are hungry.
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Brief Introduction to Neon Tetras
Understanding your neon tetras will better help you decide how often and when to feed them. This will eventually improve their health and you’ll enjoy having these beautiful fish in your tank.
The Tetra fish are indigenous to the freshwaters of Brazil, Peru, and Colombia. These fish come in varying horizontal color stripes with red being common. Their dorsal side is usually blue-black in color, while their abdomen is silvery.
Awesomely, while tetras are resting, their red stripes and blue backside turns silver too. This happens mostly at night, and it is simply a sign that your aquarium companions are resting. Isolating tetra fish is dangerous to their species. Therefore, you must keep these fish in groups of up to 10 to keep the aquarium conducive for them. They also appreciate the company of other fish species, however, make sure you check before choosing tankmates for your tetras.
Tetra fish will usually grow to about 2 inches in length. The male and female do not have much to differentiate them.
The Species of Tetra Fish
In the family of Tetras, the Neon Tetra is the most popular among aquarium enthusiasts. These fish prefer a water temperature of between 22 and 25 degree Celsius. Anything higher or lower can make them feel inconvenient.
Also, make sure that their aquarium has enough planting and free space for swimming too. Neon tetras are shy and conservative species; therefore, they appreciate being kept in a school of not less than 10 of them. They feel less vulnerable and more active in schools.
Other species of Tetras you’re likely to encounter includes:
- Glowlight tetra
- Rummy-nose tetra
- Cardinal tetra
- Congo tetra
- Serpae tetra
These species also make it to home aquariums but are less likely compared to the beautiful neon tetra.
How Often Should You Feed Your Neon Tetras?
Your neon tetras will be fine if you feed them 2 to 4 times a day. You should therefore choose the most convenient times to be feeding your aquarium fish. It could be in the morning, afternoon, and night, or morning and night, morning and afternoon or night as the case may be. You may even choose to feed them after a specified number of hours.
When you should feed your neon tetras depends solely on you. However, it is important you maintain a consistent feeding routine. Your fish can of course go a day or two without food, but do not make it the order of the day. An aquarium is not like the natural environment of these neon tetras, hence lacks the constituents of natural freshwater. As a result, irregular feeding routines will eventually get them weak and malnourished. They can easily get diseases too which can lead to their death.
How to Decide How Often to Feed Your Neon Tetras?
There is not much put into consideration before choosing the number of times to feed your neon tetras. The main thing is to be mindful of how much you feed them each time. When you decide to feed your fish twice a day, first get the amount you wish to feed them for the day, then divide them into two. This should also apply if you decide to feed them four times, simply divide the same quantity into four places.
Make sure that they finish the food each time and avoid leftovers in the aquarium. The leftovers will not only make the environment unhygienic for your fish, but they will also decay to hike the ammonia level of the water.
Also, keep an eye on the weight of your neon tetras. If you feel they are not doing well, you should consider increasing the food you give them. However, if they are gaining unusual weight, you should reduce the amount of food you give them.
What If Your Neon Tetra is New?
It doesn’t make any difference setting up an aquarium and introducing neon tetras into it. However, if you’re new to keeping these beautiful fish, you should pay more attention to certain things.
First, avoid experimenting with their aquarium habitat. These fish are very vulnerable and are likely to react to even the slightest change. This is why you need to choose a specific feeding routine that you can adapt to.
Very bright light and noise do not favor the neon tetras. And, you should not keep these fish in high traffic areas of the home. A slight impact such as tapping the aquarium glass can easily scare these fish disrupting the peace of the aquarium.
Remember to maintain the aquarium water pH level of 6.5 to 7.5 to keep your fish healthy always.
A Comprehensive Feeding Routine for Your Neon Tetras
If you’re wondering how to effectively feed your neon tetras, here is a comprehensive routine to help you guide you.
Choose a time to feed your neon tetras in the morning. Prepare the food which can high-quality flakes, micro-pellet foods, brine shrimps, or blood worms (free-dried). Remember to balance their diet, you should feed them basically with high-quality flakes or pellets. Then, use the brine shrimps or daphnia to supplement occasionally.
While feeding your fish put a little at a time in the tank. As they are finishing up the ones in the tank, pour in a little more. Do this until they are no longer eating while making sure of not leaving extra food suspending on the water. This method of feeding ensures that all your neon tetras get to eat to satisfaction. Remember to keep track of the food quantity you put in.
Repeat the same feeding process at night. Gradually pour in the food in little measured amounts until your neon tetras stop eating. Always keep a record of the amount they eat.
You can repeat this process for 2 – 3 more days to ensure consistency. With the record you are keeping each time, you will easily know how much your tetras will eat in a day. You can now spread out the same quantity to four places if you decide to feed them 4 times a day. Feeding them multiple times imitates their natural feeding behavior.
How Often Do You Feed Young Neon Tetras?
You may feed your young neon tetras 3 to 4 times a day. However, the general rule remains to keep it at least twice a day. It doesn’t matter how you choose to feed your young neon tetras, just make sure to determine how much food they can eat in a day before spreading it out multiple times. As much as starving your fish is dangerous, overfeeding is also not good.
How Often Do You Feed Adult Neon Tetras?
Some aquarists may decide to cut down the number of times they feed their neon tetras to once a day. While this may work for them, it is best to mimic the natural feeding routine of this species. This means feeding them 2 – 4 times a day. Neon tetras in the wild feed opportunistically and continuously. Thus, each time they feed smaller quantities they can easily process rather than taking a large quantity once.
If you love following procedures, then feed your adult neon tetras 2 – 4 times a day. Just make sure you measure out the amount they feed daily before dividing it into multiple times.
How Often Do You Feed Sick Neon Tetras?
First, if you feel your neon tetra is sick, find out the cause of the sickness and treat it. If they are starving, you should increase the amount of food you put into their tank. For recovering neon tetras, you may just increase the amount of food that you give them. Note that except your neon tetras are refusing food, you should feed them normally as expected.
What Happens If You Don’t Stick to a Feeding Routine?
The main question is are you feeding your neon tetras at all? Even neon tetras can go a few days without food and still be fine. Even in the wild, they feed as they see food as there is no guaranteed source of food. Multiple feeding routing is to mimic their ability to feed multiple times in the wild. Just make sure you are not starving or overfeeding your neon tetras.
Take this with You
Feeding your neon tetras with the routine on this page, your fish will all be happy and blossom in your aquarium. Choose quality food any time you wish to feed your food. To care for neon tetras is quite easy. If you notice that your feeding routine is not giving the required results, then feel free to make adjustments in the right places.