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When it comes to fish farming, feed is one of the most important things that contribute to the success of the business. No matter the types of fish feeds you choose to use on your farm, whether it is local feed or you prefer to go all foreign during your production cycle, you have to make sure it is the right one.
The choice of feed you decide to use like I always tell my clients depends on certain factors which must be greatly put into consideration before saying you will start using a particular feed for your fish.
In this article, I will be sharing with you different types of feed that you can buy and use for your catfish. These companies produce different sizes of feed and can be used for any size of catfish.
Types of Fish Feeds
i. Dry Fish Food
The first type of fish feed is Dry fish food. It is the most commonly used type of fish food in Nigeria. They are artificially made from fibre and nutrient concentrate.
This type of feed is mostly consumed by fish in tropical areas and locations that are saltwater. These feeds do not sink into the water, they stay afloat and last longer on the shelf without deteriorating in quality.
ii. Vacation Fish Food
The next type of fish food is the vacation fish food also known as either food blocks or weekend blocks.
This type of feed is good if they are given to fish in tropical areas where the farmer will not be available while the fish are feeding.
This feed when thrown into the pond dissolves and dives down to the bottom of the water.
One thing to note is not to overestimate the quantity of feed thrown into the water as the more quantity of feed not consumed, the higher it is for the pond to get polluted which might eventually lead to the death of the fish if not taken care of.
iii. Medicated Fish Feed
As the name implies, medicated fish feed is a type of feed that has been treated with medication for the fish.
If you notice any unusual thing among your fish, you can apply some medicine to the feed you want to give your fish. Although everything that has an advantage has its disadvantage, the positive outweighs the negative effect of this type of feed on your fish.
iv. Freeze-Dried And Frozen Fish Feed
These next types of fish feed are best for tropical and marine fish. The feeds are produced using natural ingredients in their habitat.
The ingredients used for making the freeze-dried fish feed are the tubifex worm, mosquito larvae, and bloodworms. The ingredient can also include water fleas and brine shrimp.
The other type of fish feed (Frozen Fish Feed), is similar to freeze-dried fish feed only that it is fresh which means it is perishable. Unlike freeze-dried fish feed, it is not processed in any form and can be sold in resellable packets.
The ingredients used in making these types of feeds are similar to that of the freeze0-dried feed but also can include things like bloodworm and daphnia.
Types of Fish Feed Brands In Nigeria
After knowing the factors to consider before choosing the best type of feed for your fish, now let’s dive into the different types of fish feed brands in Nigeria.
The first type of feed brand that you can use for your fish is Skretting.
Skretting is formerly known as Durante fish feed. According to Skretting, they say they are the global leader in providing innovative and sustainable nutritional solutions for the aquaculture industry.
They have their production facility in over 18 countries, Nigeria included.
I like their feed because it is very rich in nutrients especially if you are raising the fish from fries or you are hatching your fish and has a low feed conversion ratio (FCR) which makes the fish grow faster.
Skretting feeds are like an alternative to the natural feeds of say maggots when they are younger.
After several surveys and questions asked from fellow fish farmers, the most common reason why they don’t like using Skretting is that it is the most expensive feed among the other type of feeds.
The protein in the Skretting feed can be as high as 48%.
They have their Nigeria office in Ibadan.
Their feed comes in Superior Repro (for broodstock), Fish Starter (for larvae, fry, and fingerlings), and Superior (a floating feed for older fish).
For more information on the Alltech company, you can visit their website https://www.skretting.com/en-ng
The second type of fish feed is Coppens. Coppens is produced by a company called Alltech Coppens Aqua Centre located in The Netherlands.
With their slogan known as Specialist in fish feed, they have successfully taken over the market with strong competition to Skretting feed.
Another reason why I choose to use this feed is that just like Skretting, it is rich in protein. It is also expensive but not like Skretting.
If you have some money to spare, you can use it as a substitute for Skretting feeds.
The protein in Coppens can go as high as 56%.
Their feed comes in the following Advance (for fries), Start premium, Pre-grower, Special pro, Grower, Essence, and Repro (for broodstock).
They only don’t deal in producing catfish feed, they also have products for fish like Eel, Tilapia, Trout, and so on.
For more information on the Alltech company, you can visit their website https://alltechcoppens.com
3. Aller Aqua
The third type of fish feed brand is Aller Aqua. Aller Aqua is produced by the company named Aller Aqua.
According to them, they have been producing aqua feed for over 50 years even though it is a family business and has factories in Denmark, Poland, Germany, Egypt, China, Zambia, and Serbia while they export to over 60 countries in the world.
They have feeds for Fry, Grower, and Broodstock fish that will help them at any stage of their cycle.
Aller Aqua does not only produce feed for African Catfish, they also have feeds for fishes like Crap, Eels, Salmon, Tilapia, Trout, and so on.
For more information, visit their website https://www.aller-aqua.com/
4. Top Feeds
Top Feeds is the next aqua feed you can buy for your fish. They are produced by Premier Feed Mills Limited (a subsidiary of Flour Mills, Nigeria), with their production plant in 3 locations in Nigeria: Ibadan, Calabar, and Kaduna.
For their popularity and success story in producing poultry feeds, they ventured into producing aquafeeds.
If you are looking for a floating local feed at a low cost, then Top Feeds is one aqua feed that I will recommend for you especially if your fish are like 3 months old.
Their feed comes in Regular (for fingerlings, juvenile, and melange), and Omega Fish Feed (for table-size fish and broodstock). They also have feeds for Tilapia fish.
For more information on the Top Feeds, visit the website https://premierfeedsltd.com/
5. Blue Crown
The next type of fish feed is Blue Crown. Blue Crown is produced by a company called Olam Group. They have their factory located in Ilorin, Kwara State.
They also produce poultry feeds but branched into producing a Fish meal that has supplied freshwater fish feed to over 15,000 locate farmers in Nigeria.
For most fish farmers in Nigeria, whenever they decide to switch from the most pricey feeds that are international brands (like Skretting and Coppens), one feed they tend to choose is Blue Crown, why? Because of the nutritional strength in amino and protein balance.
Other fish feeds are produced by Olam groups but Blue Crown tops the other two.
For more information, visit the Olam Group website at https://olamgroup.com/
6. Vital Feeds
The sixth type of fish feed brand is Vital Feed. It is produced by Grand Cereals with their factory located in Abeokuta Express Way.
Vital Fish Feed just like Skretting has a low feed conversion ratio and high feed conversion efficiency which makes it easy for farmers to have a relatively good profit ratio during harvest.
According to Grand Cereals, their fish feed is highly formulated to float when given to the fish which makes the market-leading fish feed.
Their catfish feed ranges from 2mm to 9mm. They all come in a 15kg package.
Vital feed also has a fish feed for gold fry, tilapia, and Aquaboom.
For more information, visit the website https://grandcereals.com/vital-feed/
Another feed that can be used for your fish is Ecofloat.
Ecofloat is another product of the three fish feed of the Olam Group. If you are looking for a low-budget locally made floating feed, go for Ecofloat.
At some point as a fish farmer, you will want the feed you give your fish to stay afloat and not go down the water, Ecofloat solves this problem without stress.
For more information, visit the Olam Group website at https://olamgroup.com/
Other fish feed brands that you can use for raising your fish are Zeigler, Aqualis, Chi, and so on.
Factors To Consider Before Choosing A Type of Fish Feed
After knowing the types of fish feed and different feed brands in Nigeria, there are some factors you need to consider before choosing the one you will go with.
The first thing you need to consider before choosing your preferred fish feed brand is the availability of the feed in the market. You don’t want to choose a product that after your fish exhaust, is no longer available in the market.
Depending on your location, some of the feed brands mentioned above might not be readily available in the market. So before choosing either Skretting, Coppens, or other brands, make sure you do your due diligence and make sure it will be easy to buy another pack when your fish exhaust the first set.
Another factor to consider when choosing a fish feed brand is the price. Consider your pocket and how much you are willing to spend on the feed before choosing the brand.
For example, because I have the money to buy Skretting all through my production cycle doesn’t mean you have the same amount of money to spare.
Plan your expenses and make sure the amount you have will be able to finance the project before kickstarting.
The third thing you need to consider is the quality of the feed. Yes, the feeds mentioned above are of high quality but that doesn’t mean there are no adultered feeds.
Before buying any feed, make sure you are aware of the quality, protein level, and other ingredients used in producing the feed.
If you are buying in large quantities and you can easily locate the manufacturer’s plant, go there to buy and if they are not selling, they will recommend their designated distributor where you will buy the original feed.
The success of your fish farm doesn’t depend on the type of feed alone, other factors contribute to having a successful fish farm.
All the feeds mentioned above are very good depending on the aspect of fish farming you want to venture into.
I use Skretting for newly hatched fish for the first few weeks and it goes on till they are 2 months. Alternatively to using Skretting is Coppens for the fries.
As they become bigger, I use other brands of fish feed.
I always advise my clients if they have the money as a beginner, to use Skretting or Coppens for the first 2 months (from fingerlings or juvenile), they can later change to either Aller Aqua, Blue Crown, or Vital.
Because I use these feed brands and they are working well for me doesn’t mean they will work for you. These are feeds that I have used over time and have worked for me and have worked for several fish farmers, you need to find a balance and look for the feed that will be good for your farm and use.
Together we shall all succeed.
I will like to know the type of fish feed brand you are using on your farm in the comment section.