So I read alot of posts on here on a daily basis with questions pertaining to bloat and nutrition.. Usually they are seperate topics and I feel most cases of bloat are brought on by an improper diet.. Sure there is always the chance of parasites causing the dreaded bloat symptoms but I feel diet is the issue in most cases.. I for one have never had any bloat issues, escept when I was a young teen in my early days of cichlid keeping.. Food would have been whatever flake food I could get my hands on or even feeding guppies.. I had no idea at the time..
I think what most new to the hobby cichlid owners fail to realize is proper nutrition.. Is your fish a herbivore,omnivore or canivore? From my understanding more than half of mbuna are Herbivorous..Meaning there main source of food comes from scraping algae off the rocks..
Popular fish like demasoni,saulosi or Red zebras are all herbivores.. Yellow labs are omnivores feeding on snails,small fish,inverebrates and plant matter(algae).. Cynotilapia variants are carnivores feeding mainly on small fish..
I notice alot of people feed certain brands of food as a staple that have a High protien content that mainly comes from sources such as herring, krill or shrimp.. Foods like Hikari and nls are a good example.. I think they are both great but aren't designed for the majority of Mbuna..
I have always fed a Veggie based food to my mbuna and have never had problems as far as health and coloration goes.. Never have had bloat issues either.. There are lots of veggie/spirulina based fish foods out there.. But Some are still high in animal protiens.. For my mbuna I have always used HBH veggie graze.. There are other brands like ocean nutrition that make a veggie based flake food.. Never used it but I'm sure it's a great product..
Now this post isn't a review of products by any means and I am not slamming any of the above products mentioned.. More or less just trying to make people more aware of your Mbunas needs when it comes to nutrition.. I have always used Spirulina flake as a staple diet for all my mbuna.. Even those classified as carnivores did great on this food.. Just want to share my experience.. thanks all