The clownfish has become an increasingly popular pet since the release of Finding Nemo. Now that he finds himself amongst the favorite aquarium fishes, a lot of our readers are wondering, what should I feed him?
If you aren’t an animal nutritionist or tropical aquarium expert, the world of pet food can be daunting. Overwhelmed with information, some of it often mislabeled or exaggerated, where exactly do you start?
Well, reader, you start here. We have trawled through the market for the very best clownfish food around. We have picked the top 6 best foods, complete with in-depth reviews, what we like about them, and the things that we don’t.
Did you know that there are nearly 30 species of clownfish? Thankfully, each clownfish eats the same food, so whichever species you have, this guide covers them all. We have also made sure that there is also a pick for every owner and their budget. So, no more clowning around – let’s get down to business.
A Quick Look at Our Favorites in 2023
|Best Overall||Omega One Marine Flakes Fish Food||
|Best Value||TetraMarine Saltwater Flakes Marine Fish Food||
|Premium Choice||Ocean Nutrition Food Primereef Flake||
|API Marine Flakes||
|Seachem NutriDiet Marine Fish Flakes||
The 6 Best Foods for Clownfish
1. Omega One Marine Flakes Fish Food – Best Overall
The Omega One Marine Flakes Fish Food is our top pick because not only is it very nutritious for your clownfish, but it is also great value for money. So, everyone’s a winner with this product.
It is made with spirulina, which is rich in vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, C, and E, and other minerals, all of which are important for his overall wellness. Spirulina is blue-green plant plankton that is a big part of the clownfish’s diet in the wild, and it is rich in protein. It also helps to increase the vibrancy of clownfish, so he’ll continue to look as bright and beautiful as the day you got him.
It is full of fresh seafood protein rather than starch fillers that many low-quality brands use. It is also rich in omega-3 and -6 fatty acids to maintain strong immunity as well as a long life. Garlic is also listed, which fishes go crazy for, and it also helps to fight off parasites, keeping him healthy.
The only thing that we don’t like is that it lists artificial preservatives such as ethoxyquin, BHT, and BHA because natural preservatives are always better for his health.
2. TetraMarine Saltwater Flakes Marine Fish Food – Best Value
TetraMarine has created what we think is the best food for clownfish for the money. Not only is it full of nutrition but it is also concentrated, meaning that there is less waste. Less waste also improves the cleanliness of the tank and water, from which the clownfish will reap benefits. This is TetraMarine’s clean and clear water formula, so if this is something that you have struggled with before, this might be a good option for you.
It is also formulated with omega-3 fatty acids and biotin to increase his energy. Fish meal and shrimp meal are full of protein for his muscles and energy levels, and again, the lovely fishy taste that clownfish crave.
The only reason this product didn’t make it to our number spot is that the first ingredient is fish meal rather than fresh whole protein sources. The number one spot just beat them on slightly better-quality ingredients and no fillers.
3. Ocean Nutrition Food Primereef Flake – Premium Choice
Here is our premium choice, great for those fish owners who have the extra budget for their clownfish. The slightly higher price point is the only reason why we didn’t place this product in the top two. With over 30 years of experience, Ocean Nutrition offers a well-balanced formula that is fortified with vitamins and minerals for a healthy diet.
This flake recipe is their premium food for all tropical fish and several reviewers commented that their stubborn clownfish loved these flakes, so it is sure to be a big hit with most fish. It is rich in zooplankton and seafood, and the first four ingredients are animal proteins, including plankton, dried fish protein digest, salmon, and fish meal. Full of taste, protein, and omega fatty acids, the ingredients are premium quality.
This formula states that it supports the bright coloration of all tropical fish, so you can be sure whatever color your clownfish, he will be bright and beautiful. It also supports vitality. The flakes are bright orange, but the colors are naturally derived from seafood. It is also naturally preserved.
4. API Marine Flakes
This formula offers a complete and balanced diet to provide all the nutrients that saltwater fish need. Made with menhaden fish meal and squid meal, this is full of appetizing flavor that clownfish love. Meals, along with fish oil, provide omega -3 fatty acids for healthy growth and development. API states that their unique ‘breakthrough’ formula ensures easy uptake of nutrients, which increases his nutrient absorption. Not only does this decrease the amount of ammonia in the water by 30%, but it also improves his overall wellness. Less ammonia also means clearer and cleaner water. This formula also uses spirulina and dried seaweed meal that mimics what he would eat in the wild. Not only are these ingredients nutritious, but they increase color vibrancy.
This formula lists artificial preservatives that are known to irritate some animals that have sensitive digestive systems. Ideally, we would prefer API to use natural preservatives as the other premium brands do.
5. Seachem NutriDiet Marine Fish Flakes
This Seachem NutriDiet formula is a nutritionally balanced formula that lists fish meal as the first ingredient, with squid, shrimp, plankton following shortly after. Lot’s of protein equals energy and taste. It is also full of omega-3 fatty acids for healthy muscle development and function.
Chlorella algae are considered to be a superfood that is a great source of vitamins and amino acids for a healthy oxidative state and general health. Vitamin C is also listed, which is important for the clownfish and his cell formation and repair.
This formula is enhanced with their Entice formula that attracts fussy eaters and improves palatability. In addition to this, their GarlicGuard formula is also used to encourage fish to eat. It is also fortified with extra-added probiotics to enhance digestibility, which, in turn, reduces waste and keeps the water clean.
This recipe does not mention enhancing color vibrancy, which is why many of us love tropical fish. Realistically though, this is of no benefit to your clownfish so it is only a minor point of contention.
6. New Life Spectrum Marine Fish Tropical Food
This New Life Spectrum option offers pellet form rather than flake form, and although clownfish usually prefer flakes there are some out there that prefer pellets. So, this one is for these guys. It lists Antarctic krill, giant squid, and menhaden fish meal as the main meat proteins, which again are full of flavor and nutrients for little clownfish bodies.A lot of seaweed ingredients are listed, such as chlorella, ulva, and wakame seaweed, as well as kelp and spirulina, which is great for his plant protein needs. There are also many added vitamins and minerals to ensure that there is nothing left out and he will not be deficient in any way. Packed full of nutrients and vitamins for his immunity and longevity, he will do well on this formula. This recipe is naturally preserved and all the flavors and colors are also natural, which is always a positive.
Unfortunately, sinking food means that unlike flakes, any surplus food cannot be scooped up and removed easily, meaning the water can become murkier much quicker.
Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Food for Clownfish
It’s all good us telling you that these foods are excellent, but you also need to understand exactly why they are good, so you feel confident in your purchase. Here in this section, we are going to run you through what you should be looking for, as well as important things to consider and other useful tips.
Things to Consider
There are a few things that you need to consider when finding the right food for your clownfish. Clownfish are omnivores, so his food needs to list both animal proteins and plant proteins for him to achieve a well-balanced diet. We’ll run you through the different protein ingredients to look out for shortly.
Typically, he will eat from the top of the tank, so you should first look for fish flakes that will float. However, some fish are known to prefer sinking pellets, so you might need to experiment if your clownfish are fussy with flakes. Always think about your own clownfish’s needs and preferences.
Finally, you need to know that the food is affordable for you. There’s little point shelling out top dollar for the all-singing and all-dancing fish food, when, come next month, you need to change it for a budget option. Fishes have delicate digestive systems and their diet should be consistent.
Things to Look for In Clownfish Food
Although you don’t need to spend top dollar on super-premium products, you do have to spend a little bit to ensure that the product provides your clownfish with the basic nutrition. Some store-budget products are packed full of cheap fillers and ash to the point that they aren’t nutritious at all.
Not only will your clownfish’s diet be lacking, but his color will fade and his health will diminish. Always do your research, look at the ingredients, and spend a little bit more than budget prices.
Being an omnivore, the clownfish needs both meat and plant protein to achieve a well-balanced diet. Examples of good meat proteins are:
Plant protein can come from seaweed and other similar ingredients such as chlorella, ulva seaweed, wakame seaweed, kelp, and spirulina. Plant protein has nutritional benefits that meat cannot provide, so look for both.
Garlic for Fussy Clownfish
Just like us humans, there is always one that turns his nose up at what’s on offer. If you find that your clownfish is turning his nose up at the flakes you chuck in, you should try a product that has garlic ingredients added because it is known to attract fish.
Many brands also offer additional products that help with fussy eaters. The company Seachem (mentioned above) offers several products. For example, Entice is a specially formulated solution that, well, entices fish to eat the food.
Saltwater vs Freshwater Food
Although this might seem obvious, it is something very important to remember when looking for the best food for your clownfish. Clownfish are a saltwater species, not a freshwater species. All fish food is divided into saltwater food and freshwater food, and they will all be labeled as such. Different fishes have different nutritional needs.
So, feeding a clownfish the right food will ensure that he receives all the nutrition that he needs, and ensures that he will thrive rather than just survive. Look out for the labels.
Live Food Diets
Many fish enthusiasts claim that you should feed saltwater fish live food, and although it is great to feed them live food in addition to flakes, you should not replace flakes entirely. Many fish find live food more appetizing, and it is a great way of adding much more protein to his diet. But flakes are fortified with vitamins and minerals, many of which clownfish cannot get from live food alone.
So, if you want to incorporate live food into his diet it is a great idea, but never as a replacement for flaked or pellets. It is also a great way to satisfy his predatory instinct, and he’ll be much happier. So, why not give it a go?
So, now you know which are our favorite foods for your clownfish along with in-depth reviews as to why we like them. You are also equipped with knowledge about how to choose good clownfish food and what to look for. Not only can you be confident in your purchase, but hopefully we have cleared the foggy algae from your decision-making process.
Just to recap, our favorite product that is best value for money is the TetraMarine Saltwater Flakes Marine Fish Food, so this is a great option for those on a budget who do not want to scrimp on quality.
But if you have a little bit more to spend, our top winner is the Omega One Marine Flakes Fish Food. It delivers on quality, value for money, and has many great reviews from other fish lovers.
Stick with our recommendations and both you and your clownfish will be laughing!
For more reviews on fish food check out these posts:
Featured Image Credit: fridzema, Pixabay