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How to feed catfish is a method of feeding that is difficult and easy. You should not just spread the feed, because there are calculations and several other important factors that you need to know. By following the rules and the correct way of feeding catfish, you can accelerate the growth and development of catfish.

In order for catfish cultivated by you to have the right weight in a short time, you certainly need to apply special techniques and tricks. One of them is through the proper and correct way of feeding catfish.

The following is a complete description of how to feed catfish that is good and right.

Catfish Nutrition Needs

Catfish feed can take up almost half of the operational costs of aquaculture, so cultivators need to think carefully and manage how to provide the most optimal catfish feed. That way, you can reduce the capital costs for providing catfish feed.

Optimum feeding does not mean reducing the nutritional needs of catfish. Meeting the nutritional needs of catfish is the most important step for the success of the catfish enlargement process. In fact, there are tricks and ways to accelerate the growth and development of catfish through the correct way of feeding.

Catfish need as much as 30-40% of protein, depending on their age. Specifically, the following are the protein requirements for catfish:

  • Catfish seeds require protein of 38-40%.
  • At the age of growth, catfish need protein of 30-33%.
  • At the end of growth, adult catfish need less protein than 30%.

Apart from protein, other good nutrients needed by catfish are carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals. 

You need to know that usually the Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR) > 1. FCR > 1 is the ratio between feeding and increasing body weight. In other words, every 1 kg of feed given will not increase the weight of catfish equal to or more than 1 kg. The lower the FCR, the more optimal the feeding, because it means that the amount of feed spread is almost the same as the increase in fish weight.

Also Read: Here's How to Calculate the FCR of Catfish for Aquaculture!

How to Calculate Catfish Feed

We already know the nutritional needs of fish based on their age. Now, how do you calculate the catfish feed requirement per day? Let's review below!

Ada 2 cara menghitung kebutuhan pakan lele, yakni berdasarkan bobot total lele dan berdasarkan usia tebar lele. Idealnya, lele membutuhkan pakan sebanyak 3-6%dari total keseluruhan bobot tubuh ikan. Tetapi, angka tersebut bersifat fleksibel. Artinya, jumlah pakan masih bisa berkurang atau bertambah, tergantung nafsu makan ikan. 

Let's just say that you are currently giving catfish feed as much as 4% of the total weight of the catfish. You still need to pay attention to the catfish's appetite to determine the amount of feed to be stocked next.

Watch for 10 days and do sampling. If within 10 days the weight of the catfish increases, then the level of feeding can increase up to 2 times. However, keep in mind that a few weeks before the harvest period, you need to reduce the amount of feed to only 2-3% of the total weight of the catfish to anticipate the harvest process.

There is a special treatment that must be done before the feeding process for catfish seeds. You need to soak the feed first so that it expands a little more. After the feed expands, the feed can be spread in catfish farming ponds. The purpose of this special treatment is to avoid bloated catfish.

Tips so that feeding does not affect water quality is to pay attention to fish ponds 10 minutes after feeding. If you see leftover feed floating on the surface of the pond water, then take the feed immediately so it doesn't settle and turn into ammonia. If there is a lot of feed left, you also need to re-evaluate the amount of feed and the condition of the fish. It could be, the fish's appetite is reduced or the fish has no appetite because it is sick.

Also Read: Tips & Tricks for Catfish Feeding Based on Age

How to Feed Catfish Effectively

The last part of the process of feeding catfish is to pay attention to the schedule/time of feeding and how to feed catfish based on its type.

1. Based on Feeding Time

In general, the feeding schedule for catfish is 3-6 times a day. However, this frequency also depends on the weather and catfish activity. 

During extreme weather such as heavy rain, catfish feeding should be reduced or stopped first. Heavy rain can cause quite extreme temperature changes in pool water, so catfish often lose their appetite to eat. If you continue to feed catfish, there will be a lot of feed left and settles to the bottom of the pond, triggering the appearance of ammonia gas. 

You can start giving feed at 09.00. Based on the experience of professional cultivators, in the morning the pond water is still polluted by toxic substances carried by dew or morning air.

If the fish feeding schedule is earlier than 9 o'clock, the catfish will starve, so the potential for fish to consume poison is even greater. However, if you provide the feed before 9 a.m., it is feared that the poisons will be ingested by the catfish. 

In addition, feeding catfish before 9 a.m. can also cause fish to develop gill inflammation caused by parasites from the morning dew. The most effective time to provide catfish feed in the morning is 9 o'clock or when the sun shines on the pond.

Sunlight makes the remaining dew and air evaporate so that toxic substances will also be carried away. The sun shining on the pool will also make the pool temperature warmer. Ideally, you will provide catfish feed when the pool temperature reaches 21°C.

The feeding scheme for catfish should be given a minimum time interval of 2-4 hours. The following is the feeding scheme for the duration of giving 4 times a day and 6 times a day:

  • Feeding scheme 4 times

You can provide feed in the morning (when the sun has risen), during the day (when the sun is overhead), in the evening (before sunset), and at night (when it's really dark) with each interval 4 hours.

  • Feeding scheme 6 times

You can provide feed in the morning (when the sun has risen), during the day (when the sun is overhead), noon to the afternoon (when the sun has started to go down), in the afternoon (before sunset), into the evening ( when the sun has set), and evening (when it is completely dark) with a break of 3 hours each.

2. By Type of Feed

Apart from the time it is given, you also need to know how to feed it based on the type of feed. The type of feed used is influenced by the size of the catfish being cultivated. 

There are several types of feed that are commonly used for catfish farming, especially in the enlargement stage. Feeding techniques for catfish seeds that are entering the enlargement stage need attention. 

To speed up the seed enlargement process, you can provide feed in the form of silk worms. Silkworms that have been cleaned can be spread at one point in the pond, such as in the corner of the pond or the middle of the pond. Then, scatter the remaining silkworms at different points.

This technique is the best technique for providing fish seed feed in the enlargement process. The goal is to spread the silkworm feed more evenly. 

There are two ways to feed catfish that are good and correct based on the type of feed, namely floating feed or floating feed and sinking feed. Let's see the review below!

  • Float Feed

If you use floating or floating feed, you need to pay attention to the technique of giving or spreading the feed. In order for the feeding to be more evenly distributed, divide the feed to be spread at 3 points of distribution, namely the end points on the left, the middle and the ends on the right.

However, choosing the right or left end as a starting point is actually flexible. If you choose the right end first, then the feeding will end at the far left. 

Why must the technique of feeding catfish be considered? Because feeding techniques will affect the agility and uniformity of fish growth. Such stocking techniques can train catfish to move and swim actively. This technique can also optimize the spread of feed so as to produce a maximum and even harvest.

Before stocking, spray enough warm water onto the floating feed, don't get it too wet. Then stir the feed and let stand for 10-15 minutes until the feed has a soft texture.

  • Sinking Feed

In contrast to floating feed which needs to be spread at many points, you only need to spread sinking feed at one point. However, even if only at one point, the sinking feed needs to be spread slowly and little by little so that the fish feed is evenly distributed among all the fish.

There is one important thing that should not be done when spreading the feed, namely the habit of stirring or agitating the pond after spreading the catfish feed, when the catfish are eating, or after the catfish have finished all the feed. These bad habits can stress catfish and regurgitate food that has been eaten. The catfish vomit can become feed waste which settles at the bottom of the pond and becomes ammonia.

Also Read: 6 Economical Ways to Make Alternative Feed for Catfish

eFeeder, the Solution to Fish Feed Spreading Problems!

Even though you already know the tricks and ways to feed catfish that are good and right, you will still face some problems or problems that are difficult to solve. Common problems such as uneven distribution of feed, insufficient or too much feed, and even uncertain feeding schedules, will create obstacles in the fish farming business that can have long-term impacts.

Now you don't have to worry because eFishery have the solution. eFeeders is a smart feeder for fish that can be controlled remotely.

eFeeders can ensure that the amount of feed you want will be stocked according to schedule with the required frequency and spacing. And, all of this can be arranged through the app on cellphone Ladies and gentlemen.

Once set, eFeeders will spread the feed to all points of the pond according to the time and amount of catfish feed that has been determined by you. That way, no leftover food settles to the bottom of the pond. In other words, you can also improve the quality of pond water and improve catfish health. 

eFeeders can be ordered via the form below. What are you waiting for, let's optimize cultivation with eFeeders!

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Questions Regarding How to Feed Catfish

There are two ways of feeding catfish, namely based on time and based on the type of feed. It is more efficient to spread floating/floating types of feed at 3 points, while it is sufficient to spread submerged types of feed at one point.

Ideally catfish are fed 3-6 times with an interval of 2-4 hours. It is recommended to give the feed the earliest at 9 o'clock, because at that time the sun makes the pond temperature warmer, up to 21°C.

The best time to feed catfish is starting at 9 am with an interval of 2-4 hours. 9 am is considered the best time to provide feed because at that time the pond temperature is already warm, around 21°C.

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