Goldfish are generally an easy-to-feed breed of fish. If you ask me, they can eat anything that can fit easily in their mouths. So, can they eat bloodworms? To answer this question, you must first know what a bloodworm is and how it can affect the diet of your Goldfish. Does the concept of feeding worms of any sort to your Goldfish sound disgusting to you? Many aquarists have been feeding bloodworms to their Goldfish. Are they good for your Goldfish? Wait until you read this article and find out more about feeding bloodworms to your Goldfish.
Over time, people have been experimenting with types of food to feed their Goldfish. One of these experiments was to feed bloodworms to Goldfish. It was found to be very fruitful for the Goldfish and is now practiced widely. Why bloodworms may be good for your Goldfish? What are the limitations to feeding your Goldfish bloodworms? And how do you feed them to your Goldfish? In this article, I will answer all your queries. So, stay put and see for yourself, why you should be adding bloodworms to the diet of your Goldfish.
What are Bloodworms?
As much as my Goldfish enjoy eating bloodworms, it was only recently that I understood what bloodworms actually are. They are actually larvae of the midge fly. These worms hatch into a midge fly about 25 days after their birth. You cannot feed a midge fly to your Goldfish, so you feed the larvae instead, which are bloodworms.
Bloodworms, as the name suggests, are blood red in color, and have oxygen-carrying proteins in them, which give them this color. As with any other worm, they are a little translucent and slippery. They have a sharp needle-like head that can sting you or even your Goldfish, so care must be taken when feeding them live to your Goldfish.
Bloodworms do not feed on fish, luckily. Instead, they live on the decaying waste of the fish and can be great at clearing the waste from the tank. But they are only added to the Goldfish tank for feeding purposes.
Types of Bloodworms to Feed your GoldFish
As bloodworms have become widely popular among Goldfish owners to feed their Goldfish, different varieties have been introduced in the market, to aid the Goldfish keepers. Some are better than others, but they generally are classified into three main types:
1. Live Bloodworms: These are fresh as they are found in the natural environment. they are very high in protein content. When buying live bloodworms, care must be taken that they are bought from a good store.
2. Frozen Bloodworms: Some retailers catch and freeze the bloodworms and store them in blocks. You can purchase frozen bloodworms and feed them to your Goldfish after thawing them.
3. Dried-Frozen Bloodworms: Bloodworms are dried and frozen to make a more compact feed for you to buy. These are easier to feed your Goldfish.
Why are Bloodworms Good for your GoldFish?
How can worms be good for feeding your Goldfish, this is a question I often ask myself. But my Goldfish and their well-being are my utmost priority and here is why feeding bloodworms are good at keeping your Goldfish healthy:
- High in Protein: As bloodworms have very high protein content, they are very good for the growth of your Goldfish. The young Goldfish require high proteins in their diets that will encourage their growth. The regular pellets that you feed your Goldfish, do not have such high proteins. Feeding your Goldfish bloodworms will fulfill their dietary requirements.
- Fiber: Bloodworms also contain fiber to help digest the protein that they provide to your Goldfish. However, the content of fiber is low, and at times may not be enough to help your Goldfish digest the protein.
- High in Iron: The deficiency of iron in your Goldfish, can make them tired and stunt their growth. The bloodworms contain good iron content to provide your Goldfish with the iron that they need.
- Tasty for Goldfish: As odd as it may seem, Goldfish love bloodworms. It is their favorite food to eat. If you have a Goldfish that does not enjoy eating any sort of food, and you are worried about what to feed it, bloodworms can never go wrong. If you feed your Goldfish bloodworms, they will most certainly enjoy their meal and eat up all that you feed them.
- Easy Availability: Bloodworms are very common, and you can easily get them from a pet store. They are not very costly either, making them easy to purchase. This is a great upside if they are so beneficial for your Goldfish, and your Goldfish enjoy eating them a lot. They are also easy to store, as they are also available in frozen and dried forms, making them very convenient.
- Good Sport: As you are keeping your Goldfish in a tank or an aquarium, you are obviously keeping them away from their natural habitat. Feeding your Goldfish live bloodworms is also good for them as they will chase the bloodworms for food, making it fun to watch for you and a good sport for them. This will keep them linked to their natural habitat, as other foods you feed them like pellets and flakes are not something your Goldfish would find in their natural environment.
- Good for Breeding: During the breeding season, Goldfish feed on live insects and small fish, to provide themselves with proper nourishment for breeding. When you are keeping your Goldfish in a tank, and it is the breeding season, your Goldfish are being deprived of such small animals to feed on. Feeding bloodworms to your Goldfish can be good in the breeding season as will improve the quality of their fry and will encourage more mating and breeding.
What are the Disadvantages of Feeding Bloodworms to your GoldFish?
As much as bloodworms are good for your Goldfish, they have their limitations as well. Here is how feeding bloodworms can be bad for your Goldfish:
- Constipation: Bloodworms are very rich in protein, and this can make them hard to digest. Bloodworms do have some fiber in them to help your Goldfish digest this protein, but this fiber may not be enough. As your Goldfish is also feeding on other food, an excess of bloodworms in their feed can be bad, and result in improper digestion of food. This will in turn cause constipation in your Goldfish. After all, excess of everything is bad.
- Live Bloodworms Can Bite: Live bloodworms have needle-like heads. When the bloodworms’ heads are not chopped off, they may bite or sting your Goldfish. This can disturb your Goldfish, so care must be taken that the heads of the bloodworms are removed when they are being fed to your Goldfish.
- Diseases: If you are feeding your Goldfish live bloodworms and have purchased the worms from a risky pet store, the bloodworms may carry diseases with them. These diseases can harm your Goldfish and cause them to die. Care must be taken when buying live bloodworms, that the store that you are buying them from is known for its good standard and quality of products.
- Frozen Bloodworms: As much as frozen bloodworms are convenient, they are very much less nutritional value. It is best that you feed live bloodworms to your Goldfish.
- Not All Essential Nutrients: even if bloodworms are high in protein, they do not contain all the vital nutrients required in the diet of your Goldfish. For this reason, bloodworms should never be fed alone to your Goldfish, always provide your Goldfish with other food like vegetables and pellets as well.
Quantity of Bloodworms to Feed your GoldFish
More protein is required in the early stage of life of a Goldfish, as the growth at that time is maximum. The ideal quantity of bloodworms to feed your Goldfish, based on their age is mentioned below:
- Baby Goldfish: If you have a lot of baby Goldfish or fry in your Goldfish tank, you can add 20 bloodworms per week to the tank. Since baby Goldfish are small and will only eat the food that they can easily fit in their mouths, you can feed them smaller bloodworms.
- Young Goldfish: In the stages where your Goldfish is no more a fry but is still maturing into an adult, you can add 10 bloodworms per week to each of your Goldfish.
- Adult Goldfish: For an average-sized adult Goldfish, 4 to 5 bloodworms per week are sufficient. This is because now your Goldfish is fully matured, and only needs the protein for staying healthy, and not as much for growing.
How to Feed Bloodworms to your GoldFish
You would expect this to be pretty simple, but the feeding process of bloodworms, especially, live ones, can be very risky. This is how I feed bloodworms to my Goldfish:
- Feeding Live Bloodworms: Make sure that you are wearing rubber gloves when handling live bloodworms, as their needle-like head can sting you. It is best that when you remove them from their container, you add them to a bowl of water, that is deep enough to contain them and for you to easily handle them. Next, you must cut their heads off with sharp scissors, or you can simply use your glove-clad hands to smash their heads. After you have done this, the bloodworms will still be moving around, and you must pick them up from the water with tweezers to add to your Goldfish tank.
- Feeding Frozen Bloodworms: Frozen bloodworms will be available in blocks or cubes, and you can simply cut a section off the cube when you are feeding them to your Goldfish. You must let the frozen worms defrost in a warm area, but not too warm, as they might start to rot. After they are defrosted, you can simply add them to your Goldfish tank.
- Feeding Freeze-Dried Bloodworms: Again, you will have to take a chunk off the frozen block. You must add it to warm water for 10 to 12 minutes. This will defrost the bloodworms and make them soft. When they have expanded fully, you can feed them to your Goldfish.
Are Bloodworms Enough to Feed your Goldfish?
Although your Goldfish enjoy the taste of bloodworms, they are not enough to fill their dietary needs. Bloodworms are only high in protein, but your Goldfish need other minerals and nutrients as well to live a healthy life. So, you can not solely rely on bloodworms to fulfill that need. The pellets and flakes available in the pet stores for your Goldfish is an artificial source of food, but they still have a good nutritional value for your Goldfish. You must also feed your Goldfish proper vegetables like lettuce, carrots, and peas, which provide good fiber and magnesium for good digestion and growth. However, Bloodworms should be fed to your Goldfish, but only as an additional supplement.
The Bottom Line On Can GoldFish Eat Bloodworms?
I am sure that this article has convinced you to feed your Goldfish bloodworms if you have not been doing so already. As much as good they are for my Goldfish, I keep a healthy balance of bloodworms and other food in the diet of my Goldfish, and I suggest that you do the same. You would be surprised to see how chasing and eating bloodworms make your Goldfish happy and excited.