The Anti Feeder Fish Coalition is an interesting movement which aims to educate fresh and saltwater aquarists that feeding live goldfish to aquarium predators is just really bad form. Feeding goldfish is messy, they are not nutritious and never mind that the practice is barbaric and without any real merit whatsoever. Seriously though, feeder goldfish should not be fed to any aquarium animal for any reason. Sure goldfish can be gut-loaded but their stomachs are only so large and you might as well encourage your fish to feed on more nutritious fare like frozen silversides, squid or raw shrimp. It’s still astonishing that so many old salts still think you can’t train lionfish and other predators to eat prepared foods; if they get hungry enough they will strike at just about anything. We once succeeded in training a peppermint lionfish to eat large floating pellets from the surface in two days flat. Sure there are some fish that will only strike at live foods but for these we recommend ghost shrimp or in very rare cases feeder guppies or platties. If you are an aquarium store that sells live feeder fish, please consider the alternatives. We’ve worked at plenty of stores that didn’t carry live food besides blackworms and brine shrimp and trust us, when you start selling goldfish the store draws in a whole different clientele, the kind that will come in every week just to ask for feeders. Selling frozen food is a whole lot more profitable for the store and a whole lot more nutritious for your customer’s fish.
Jake Adams has been an avid marine aquarist since the mid 90s and has worked in the retail side of the marine aquarium trade for more than ten years. He has a bachelor’s degree in Marine Science and has been the managing editor of ReefBuilders.com since 2008. Jake is interested in every facet of the marine aquarium hobby from the concepts to the technology, rare fish to exotic corals, and his interests are well documented through a very prolific career of speaking to reef clubs and marine aquarium events, and writing articles for aquarium publications across the globe. His primary interest is in corals which Jake pursues in the aquarium hobby as well as diving the coral reefs of the world.