What to feed small 2 inch long South American Lungfish

The Lost Tapes

Feeder Fish
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Sep 7, 2021
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I bought a small SA Lungfish today and am unsure as to its diet. I had offered it a broken up massivore pellet, but it does not seem very interested in it. I do not know how long it can go without eating as it being as small as it is, makes me think it cannot go too long without food, and idk when the LFS last fed it. I was told that bloodworms and stuff like it are what it should be fed but I know that those are not that good as a food. Am I feeding the wrong food or is this normal of them?
 
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Jack Dempsey
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Mine accepted live blackworms, f/t bloodworms, and f/t brine shrimp. They don't seem to be picky eaters, but it may be a bit difficult getting them to reliably eat dry foods. I would definitely recommend trying live blackworms first- most microphagous fish seem to be rather fond of them.
 

wednesday13

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Ive never had a lung of any sp. or size refuse pellets… might take a few days to settle in just be persistent with it. Mysis is always my preferred frozen food for “micro machines”… i wouldn’t go down the road of live foods unless u absolutely have too. They can go a week without eating no problem.
 

The Lost Tapes

Feeder Fish
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The Bloodworms would be better than not eating anything. Try a small earthworm.
wednesday13 wednesday13
Alright, I know that bloodworms aren't the best of foods nutritionally, plus its annoying to have to defrost it but I will try it.
Mine accepted live blackworms, f/t bloodworms, and f/t brine shrimp. They don't seem to be picky eaters, but it may be a bit difficult getting them to reliably eat dry foods. I would definitely recommend trying live blackworms first- most microphagous fish seem to be rather fond of them.
I do not want to use live foods if it is avoidable.
Ive never had a lung of any sp. or size refuse pellets… might take a few days to settle in just be persistent with it. Mysis is always my preferred frozen food for “micro machines”… i wouldn’t go down the road of live foods unless u absolutely have too. They can go a week without eating no problem.
I have had success training Bichirs of the same size that were being fed frozen/live foods to eat pellets, but what worries me is that the lungfish is rather small and thin, I have never kept one so I am unsure of its eating habits. But I know young fish can't go without food for a while which is what worries me, I'm probably overparanoid. I have given it a variety of pellets that I have to see if it eats any, this is how I have previously done it to Bichirs. Nonetheless I just am scared of it starving itself to death.
 

wednesday13

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Alright, I know that bloodworms aren't the best of foods nutritionally, plus its annoying to have to defrost it but I will try it.

I do not want to use live foods if it is avoidable.

I have had success training Bichirs of the same size that were being fed frozen/live foods to eat pellets, but what worries me is that the lungfish is rather small and thin, I have never kept one so I am unsure of its eating habits. But I know young fish can't go without food for a while which is what worries me, I'm probably overparanoid. I have given it a variety of pellets that I have to see if it eats any, this is how I have previously done it to Bichirs. Nonetheless I just am scared of it starving itself to death.

What kind of tank is it in? Drowning it would b a bigger worry personally for such a small specimen… keeping it in a small floating basket/tub might be beneficial to getting it eating as well. Smallest ive rased was 4-5”… it was kept in a floating tub for the 1st year of life. No stress from tank mates and food is easily found that way also. S/A especially will enjoy floating plants also, easy breathing is a big one for these little guys. Its possible its just not finding what ur offering.
 

The Lost Tapes

Feeder Fish
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Sep 7, 2021
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What kind of tank is it in? Drowning it would b a bigger worry personally for such a small specimen… keeping it in a small floating basket/tub might be beneficial to getting it eating as well. Smallest ive rased was 4-5”… it was kept in a floating tub for the 1st year of life. No stress from tank mates and food is easily found that way also. S/A especially will enjoy floating plants also, easy breathing is a big one for these little guys. Its possible its just not finding what ur offering.
Its currently in my 75G in a somewhat large breeder box with about 3-4 inches of depth and an inch of clearance on the surface. It was swimming on the food but I did not see it eat any. It seems to be somewhat more relaxed today so I take it that its settling in. I gave it a variety of pellets last night and I don't know if it ate any overnight since ik Lungfish tend to be nocturnal. I presume it will eat sometime within the next 2-3 days since I have had bichirs go on a hunger strike for that long when added in. Unless it will only feed nocturnally which is what I do not know right now.
 

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Piranha
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I think a 2" lungfish is a pretty vulnerable little guy. I would start with live tubifex or a freshly chopped piece of earthworm. Remove any uneaten food within an hour max to prevent the water from fouling in the breeder box.

Your chances of getting it onto pellets later if it is able to make this transition to your tank and put on weight are better than trying to go straight to dry food when the fish is still under a lot of stress and could potentially go into a food strike. I would assume it hasn't eaten anything at all since it left the breeder, which could easily be a few weeks. If that is the case, it's digestive system could be "shutting down" and not sending out strong hunger signals. Most important thing is to get that first bite asap.
 

wednesday13

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Its currently in my 75G in a somewhat large breeder box with about 3-4 inches of depth and an inch of clearance on the surface. It was swimming on the food but I did not see it eat any. It seems to be somewhat more relaxed today so I take it that its settling in. I gave it a variety of pellets last night and I don't know if it ate any overnight since ik Lungfish tend to be nocturnal. I presume it will eat sometime within the next 2-3 days since I have had bichirs go on a hunger strike for that long when added in. Unless it will only feed nocturnally which is what I do not know right now.
Nice 🤙💀. Happy to hear ur already set up well for the little guy in a breeder box. Just gotta cycle through the “line up” of foods until he bites.
 

The Lost Tapes

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Sep 7, 2021
25
22
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81
I think a 2" lungfish is a pretty vulnerable little guy. I would start with live tubifex or a freshly chopped piece of earthworm. Remove any uneaten food within an hour max to prevent the water from fouling in the breeder box.

Your chances of getting it onto pellets later if it is able to make this transition to your tank and put on weight are better than trying to go straight to dry food when the fish is still under a lot of stress and could potentially go into a food strike. I would assume it hasn't eaten anything at all since it left the breeder, which could easily be a few weeks. If that is the case, it's digestive system could be "shutting down" and not sending out strong hunger signals. Most important thing is to get that first bite asap.
Nice 🤙💀. Happy to hear ur already set up well for the little guy in a breeder box. Just gotta cycle through the “line up” of foods until he bites.
Thank you, last night it ate the crushed up massivore pellet I gave it as it wasn't there in the morning but the crushed up algae wafer I also added was. I also saw that it left waste in the box. I take this as a good sign since he seems much more calm now compared to when I put it in. I have seen people say you should mix massivore and algae wafers but idk if I should do that now or just wait until its larger.
 
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