Fishkeeping can be a time-consuming exercise. Often we find ourselves squeezed for time and unable to fulfill our passion.
It should not stop us from keeping the fish we love especially now we have automatic fish feeders to help solve the problem.
It’s a wonderful way of ensuring that the fish get fed – even if you are away from your home when feeding times are due. There may be work trips you can’t skip, or perhaps you are just going away on holiday. If either of these things happens to you then just click here.
Automatic feeders put food into the tank, so you can be free to get on with whatever is pressing you on your busy schedule.
It’s selecting the right one for you that can be difficult. After all no one’s situation is exactly the same. But to be sure you are buying the correct one so your cash is not wasted consider these four things.
1) Make sure you’re automatic fish feeder is able to keep your fish healthy. Has it got the right equipment? The two most essential – and most common – are a filter that cleans the water, and a heater to warm the water.
2) Ensure that the feeder, which is an electronic device, is able to feed your fish when you’re away and can control the portion sizes and frequency of eating times. After all, what these pieces of kit are, are containers of food that run on timers so they can drop food into the water for the fish to eat at programmed times. Some models can run for as many as six weeks without needing to be refilled.
3) Look for containers that are clear plastic with a digital screen so you can program the settings. Be aware that some of these devices can look a bit different. There is more than one type of automatic feeder, but they normally are designed to sit alongside the aquarium. The typical tank can be one of these: tropical, cold-water, and marine. For fish keepers who maintain their collection in ponds, there are models to suit them too.
4) Automatic fish feeders sit alongside the tank’s top. They release food at pre-set intervals and in portion sizes that you decide. Most have three parts in the main: the hopper, the timer, and a method for setting time intervals and sizes of portions.
The hopper holds the food. It is filled up and the fish gradually remove the food. The hopper is rotated by the timer and food is dispensed in the process. The units can get their power from either batteries or via power cords.
Varieties of feeders
Some fish feeder devices come with suction cups so they can be fitted on the inner wall of an aquarium. However, there are others that have mounting brackets so they can be hooked over the side of a tank.
There are models that offer a ‘feed now’ facility. This is activated by a button and the unit is able to drop food into the tank even outside programmed times. This facility helps when you want to test that the feeder is working. You don’t have to wait for the time you have programmed to come around.
There are new designs on the market that make it possible for the automatic feeders to be controlled from a phone.
Automatic feeders need to be maintained, but this is not difficult. All you have to do is make sure you clean the device when you clean the fish tank. You will also need to replace the food as well as making sure everything is dry to ensure you prevent any malfunctioning.
With auto fish feeders you can only use dried foods. If you have fish that enjoy any live or frozen foods including bloodworms, you could switch to using freeze-dried foods.