by Tom Sarac
Most fish are omnivorous. They eat many things in nature and, in general, feed aggressively as their next meal is never a guaranteed event. This is a very important point to understand when feeding not only fish, but many other pets as well! Instinctually, it’s in an animal’s best interest to eat as much as possible at every opportunity. In captivity, where conditions are markedly different, this goes against their best interest. As their caretakers, we must ensure to feed our pets a high quality food in smaller yet regular quantities, with ingredients that don’t lead to obesity or the pollution of their environment. The strategy of feeding smaller amounts more often is thus a better option for most fish. This allows for better digestion, it better satisfies their natural predatory instincts, and it gives nitrifying bacteria within an aquarium more time to convert waste to less harmful byproducts. In the wild, insects and their larvae represent such smaller meals – a format that is natural for fish.
There are many insects on this planet – approx. 950,000 species! Are some better than others for fish? The answer: absolutely yes. Some insects have such a short life cycle that, in their adult form, they do not have a mouth and as such do not feed. They also do not sting, bite or do anything else undesirable. These insects grow rapidly and do so exclusively to mate and procreate. These “short duration” insects – like the Black Soldier Fly – are inherently a very clean and highly digestible protein source. They cannot be vectors for disease and represent an excellent and very efficient protein source for fish and other animals. Insects are good protein sources for humans, too – in some parts of the world, this is a common and very accepted fact!
Insects have other very significant advantages as well. Environmentally speaking, they represent a growing source of sustainable protein and are an integral part of the solution to reducing carbon emissions, while also reducing the consumption of wild fish stocks.
Insects are the ultimate when it comes to recycling. Fluval is incorporates Black Soldier Fly larvae into a special line of fish food known as Bug Bites. These larvae are raised in a controlled environment and fed exclusively human-grade waste vegetables and fruits. Black Soldier Fly larvae is so safe that they are CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) approved for use in foods to feed fish raised for human consumption!
Fluval is partnered with Enterra, a company based in British Columbia, Canada, which specializes in sustainable insect protein solutions. Bug Bites feature these highly nutritional larvae, which are both palatable and nutritious to fish and boast an excellent amino profile, as the first ingredient across the line. Every purchase of Bug Bites helps to maintain the Earth’s natural environments, too!