|read introduction here|
Ranchu are omnivores and prefer a wide variety of foods. To insure health and reduce obesity, their diet has to be balanced with proteins, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins.
Foods high in protein:
- live or frozen brine shrimp
Foods high in vitamins and minerals:
- chlorella and phytoplankton
Food Types And Digestion Times
Food with less moisture content takes longer to digest. A safe interval between feedings can be placed at 2 hours, however digestion time will change depending on the amount of food given. Approximate digestion times:
- daphnia, brine shrimp, wolffia, duckweed - 1 hr
- bloodworm - 1 ½ hr
- pellets - 2 hrs.
One of the foods that is central to ranchu development. Easily digestible and highly absorbent, daphnia is high in nutrients and contributes to a maximum fry growth potentials.
Another food that is very important to ranchu. It has superior digestion and absorption rate. High in protein, it promotes head-growth and overall development.
With excellent absorption rate and nutritional value it is a good alternative to daphnia. Newly hatched brine shrimp is excellent for feeding fry.
Low in fat and protein, vegetables are rich in vitamins, minerals and organic pigments, and are very important supplement. They promote colors and overall health, especially at young stages. Most used vegetables are: phytoplankton, green algae, chlorerlla, spirulina, duckweed, pumpkin, wolffia and spinach among others.
Due to low moisture content, digestion rate is the slowest, up to 2 hrs and more. Best if pellets are alternated with easily digestible foods, e.g. bloodworm. Due to high nutritional value and longer digestion times, feeding only with pellets may cause obesity and requires carful observation. There are many brands that offer ranchu pellets. However, not all of them are equal in quality and value. My own preference is Azayaka Brand ranchu pellets. Here is my article on different brands of pellets, their comparison and analyzes.
Organic pigments or carotenoids like luteins (for yellows) and astaxanthin (for reds) are very important for developing fish coloration. Incorporating spinach, pumpkin, duckweed, wolffia and color enhancing pellets is beneficial.
Wolffia is the world’s smallest flowering plant that belongs to a group of duckweeds. It is easily digestible, contributes to color development (especially yellow) and overall health of a young fish. It also helps to maintain a slim belly. Wolffia can be easily substituted with duckweed.
Benefits of Wolffia or Duckweed:
- promotes head-growth development
- promotes slim belly and good physical shape
- easily digestible
- rich in vitamins and minerals
- high in protein
- positively effects color development
- shades the water and helps to lower water temperature
- removes access of oxygen and supplies carbon dioxide
- utilizes ammonia
Cultivating Wolffia or Duckweed:
- requires a lot of sunlight
- tap water can be used
- provide light aeration
- will propagate very rapidly in 86 F (30°C)
- keep water temperature under 97 F (36°C)
- in winter, if temperatures are low, will go dormant and will sink to the bottom