Tell me what you know about betta nutrition :)
How do you pick a good pellet?
What do you make sure is included in the pellets or not included?
What are the benefits of feeding garlic?
What are the benefits of feeding live food/homemade food over pre-made pellets?
How do you gut-load your fry (if you feed live fry)?
If you feed pellets, do you soak in garlic juice or tank water?
-Atison's Betta Food
-Atison's Betta Pro
-Omega One Betta Food
-HBH Betta Bites
-Hikari Micro Wafers (the crude protein is up to scratch, even though its a tropical fish food)
-New Life Spectrum
-Ken's Betta Crumble
Good Live Foods:
and some bettas like the daphnia, but its so small that my betta never seems to see it floating past him.
How to pick a good food:
-Meat as the first ingredient (salmon, krill, halibut, fish meal, whitefish, shrimp meal); as many 'meaty' ingredients in the first 5 ingredients as possible.
-Crude protein content of at least 35%
-No "land animal" ingredients like chicken and beef heart.
-Whole meats (eg whole salmon, whole halibut) are better.
Benefits of garlic:
Not really sure, purportedly it aids circulation and the immune system but I have never bothered with it.
Benefits of live food:
Good supplement to a diet of pellets, but a pure diet of live food should be avoided as it lacks enough nutrutional variety. At most I would go 60% live, 40% pellets.
Benefits of homemade food:
I'm not sure the mechanics of this are really possible and have never heard of any betta food recipes. After all, you would have to cut it up pretty darn small.
Put in the food and they will gut-load themselves! Just kidding... preferably you should feed them as soon as they hatch (or even feed the eggs, where possible), as the egg sac is the most nutritious part. Therefore, no gut-loading. If you do gut-load fry, I would suggest doing it with spirulina flakes so your betta gets lots of vitamins that he wouldn't normally get.
I don't do either... in theory, if you know how many pellets your betta can eat (after they expand), soaking wouldn't be necessary. Like I said, I don't bother with garlic so I'd probably do it in tankwater if I did soak.
ALSO: The trick to good nutrition is to feed as many varieties of food as possible. This can be achieved by feeding different types of live and frozen in conjunction with a few different brands of pellets. I feed my guy the first five pellets I mentioned above, although a supermod on another forum I frequent feeds her guys "Betta 16" mix... her own blend of 16 brands of pellets!
This is some information I got from FAMA magazine Oct. 2010
Good nutrition can enhance-immune response/system, increase disease resistance, assit in maintaing bodily function and growth/development
Fish need a source of Protein, lipids, vitamins and minerals
Protein-essential and non-essential amino acids for tissue repair, production of antibodies, growth/development, reproduction
Lipids-this is the major source of energy, provide structure for cell walls, carries the fat soluble vitamins A-D-E-K, hormones and supply the essential fatty acids like Omega 3&6 (Omega can't be made by the fish body), DHA-these are important in promoting the healthy immune response and reproduction.
Vitamin/minerals-are needed in trace amounts for normal growth/development and reproductive health
Foods that enhance health-
Protein and amino acids-Fish meal, soybean meal, corn gluten meal, brewer yeast, wheat gluten
Omega 3-fish oil, linseed oil
Omega 6- soybean, canola oil
Vit E-wheat germ
Vit C-leafy greens, kale, spinach
Fiber-less than 10%-too high fiber can reduce intake of food and affect utlization of nutrients
This was a great article and it went on into the nutritional disorders as well-great article by the way
Also, it is best to buy the smallest container of fish food-they can go bad, the additives are not stable.....once the seal is broken they are good for about 6mo-1yr
Fresh Garlic-is used for appetite stimulant, helps immune response and can also be used for parasite by purging the system-this however, take 6 weeks to be effective and needs to be fed in correct amounts-*not recommended for emergency conditions