Fish don't seem to care when I feed them, should I keep trying?


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I inherited a 750gal pond with our new house. Definitely more of a water garden, loads of lilies and hornwort and marginal plants.

Previous owners left about six months before we bought it. All the fish they had were well dead, it was pretty gnarly.

Did a rehab, almost full water change and divided the monstrous lilies. Let things settle and kept taking water quality tests until I felt it stabilized enough to add some fish.

I got 5 comets and 3 shubunkin as babies. Maybe 2" when I got them. Plopped them in and they basically disappeared.

I threw in some food (tetra pond sticks and wardley pellets depending on my mood) and they never ate it. I would check every hour or so until it looked like the food was gonna sink and scooped it out. Tried this for maybe two weeks 2x a day.

Well, it's been about 6 weeks and the guys just showed up outta nowhere. Zipping around, looking healthy (not skinny at all). At least double the size when I threw them in.

My question is - so clearly they're more comfortable so should I try to start feeding them again? I mean, they seem to have been doing fine for this long and I mostly got them to keep bugs and algae in check. There's plenty to grub around in this pond.

I'm new to this and theres a lot of conflicting info out there. I assume they're fine not being fed. Even so - is there a point (or something to look out for) that would tell me I should start feeding again?
 
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Welcome to the GPF!

It's totally up to you with goldfish. They can exist completely on their own in a well established pond. You honestly never have to feed them.

Having said that, feeding your fish can be fun. They will all come running - well, swimming! - when they see you once they get accustomed to the routine. Even if you feed them just a couple of times a week, they will recognize you. So if you'd like more interaction with your fish, toss them a little food now and then. Start small to make sure they are interested. You may have to stay out of sight the first few times to avoid startling them, but they will slowly get used to you while you feed them.
 

j.w

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@Shirokabocha
Just don't feed too often as said above they can go w/o you feeding them forever and the more you feed the more they poo.
 
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Get a small container of flake food for goldfish at pet store if you want them to eat and you get the enjoyment of do so.
Like lisa and yourself said they disapeared for a while and showed up one day plump.
 
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New fish can be a little skittish for a while until they get used to their environment. You might not see a new fish for weeks.

Even my long time residents can be a bit skittish when I start feeding them again in the Spring.

Try not to make sudden moves when you toss the food in. Do it from a distance so they don't see your hand swinging toward them and don't cast your shadow on the water.

Try throwing the food in the same spot so they grow accustomed to it landing there all the time.

Soon they will recognize you and come looking for the food.

I've had koi take those Tetra pond sticks right from my fingers.
 
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addy1

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Welcome to our forum!

I don't feed my fish all summer well almost never, do every now and then just for the fun of it. But seldom. They do great in the pond, watch them chew on the hornwort, anacharis and whatever else is in the pond, They are all nice and fat. Even my 1000 gallon pond gets no food, they have some anacharis hornwort and other plants to chew on.
 
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My really old huge fish died and he ate pond sticks; now the 2 tiny fish do not seem to want to eat flakes. I decided they can eat the roots of floating water hyacinth; and from reading above; since pond is established, I will rely on that.
 

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