WHERE in the pond to feed - some considerations based on pond design

Where to feed.
I've never seen an article that picks up the subject of where to feed. However, in the day-to-day experience of ponding it can be significant. This is especially true when someone else is feeding your fish for you while you're away and if you don't think about this, they will screw it up for you.

Unaware people feed the fish all at once, near the skimmer. Because they don't know about sprinkling the food for five minutes, they dump the whole coffee-can of food four feet from your Skimmer and off it goes. Hungry fish living in polluted water is the result. Skimmers a great, don't get me wrong, but if there's a place you can feed the fish where it doesn't migrate to the skimmer too quickly, choose that space.

Alternatively, you can make a "feeding ring" out of PVC pipe and four elbows. This is simply a square ring of PVC with water excluded from inside, so it floats. This retains the food. The ring can be retained with a string. Fish can come up and eat the food floating in the ring.

While almost any PVC diameter will float in this orientation, you should consider making your feeding ring out of 2" PVC because the fish can eat out of this ring and not disperse the food from it. (2" PVC goes down into the water further)

Another "Where to Feed" Question concerns sinking foods. Medicated foods, and some of the more oily shrimp based foods are necessarily sinking because either they could not be "heat puffed" or they are just that dense. Sinking foods are challenging for small fish in gravel bottom ponds, but all is not lost. Fish will eat off anything. They can be accustomed to many things and so it's possible to put something on the bottom of the pond for them to eat sinking food from. In most ponds like that, I have VERY much preferred clear polycarbonate roof material - like you put on greenhouses, it indexes with the water, becoming NEARLY invisible AND better still, the corrugations prevent the food being swoooshed off into the gravel. It works GREAT unless a fish gets wedged underneath - so either leave space or prevent ingress of the fish.

In my goldfish tanks, I used a white Corel plate. I'd drizzle the sinking food onto that plate and the Goldfish would come get it.

In an Aquascape pond, I'd clear a 2 x 2 foot area in the gravel, down to the liner and feed a sinking pellet there while needed. You can re-cover that area when the sinking food is done.

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