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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yellow labs.

I've fed my labs OSI Spirulina* for years with good results. However, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find at a decent price (compared to other spirulina flakes). I typically buy the 1 oz containers and they last me about a year (don't want the flake to go bad).

I noticed that on my current container of OSI, spirulina is listed as the second ingredient. Now when I look up the ingreds on the web, it is the 3rd. I wonder if they have changed their formula?

In any case, based on the ingredients of the 3 choices below, which is the healthiest for my cichlids?

See attached.
 

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Of those choices I would say Royal Pet but why not feed a staple food that has a balance of quality ingredients, among them spirulina, but with a lower protein content?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply. Good question. I thought that I was feeding them a good staple food. What is your recommendation on high quality staple food with lower protein content?
 

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Bombay said:
with lower protein content?
Why is a lower % protein content desirable?
There is not a shred of evidence that links % protein content to malawi bloat .....and all kinds of evidence that indicates it is stress related, primarily due to aggression.
Lower protein and lower fat means higher carbohydrates. There is a reason % carbohydrate is not listed on fish foods because most fish do not utilize it very well; even most primarily vegetarian fish. Protein and fat is where it is at for fish; that is why it is listed! Unless your feeding goldfish or "tilapias", a lot of carbohydrate is essentially waste. You can get an approximation of carbohydrate by adding up the protein, fat, and moisture content and subtracting from 100 and it should be with in a few %.
A high carbohydrate content is an indication of a lot of terrestrial grains. Flour and starch. Cheap fillers and binding agents that at least some studies have shown might be linked to health problems in fish, including bloat. Aquatic algae is often much higher in protein and fat, and hence much more usable for fish then large amounts of terrestrial grains. An example being spirulina which is typical higher then 60% protein and about 10% fat (considerably more in terms of % calories).
As far as which of these products would have the most spirulina, it's probably the Royal Pet. All fish food that is made into pellet and flake has to be turned into meal first, before it is formed into a pellet or flake. By listing it as meal, you know it is in a dry state and therefor it's position on the order of ingredients is not inflated by moisture content. When it is not listed as meal, the ingredient MIGHT be in a wet state and something like algae could easily weigh 5 times it's dry weight. By listing it in a wet state, it can be very deceiving, as the weight of the water places the ingredient higher on the list over something that is always dry, such as flour, corn starch ect. Also, I believe the Royal Pet shows the % of spirulina as 20%. Which is very significant for an ingredient that is expensive compared to flour (or even fish meal for that matter).
As far as the product with the least "filler", it's probably the Ocean Nutrition since it has both the higher protein and fat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
BC in SK said:
Why is a lower % protein content desirable?
Correct, that is the question.

After reading some of the articles about "feeding" in the library, I came to the conclusion that I was on the right track with a spirulina-based flake. hmmm.

https://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/ ... chlids.php

https://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/food_recipes.php

So far, after many years (the "tank" is about 15 years old) my fish have not experience any noticeable issues, disease, deaths, etc. I figured if it ain't broke, don't break it. :D

Looking for a good food...to keep my labs healthy (like they certainly appear to be).
 

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I have had personal success with New Life Spectrum Cichlid Formula. Protein is 34%. Other seaweeds and algaes along with the spirulina. I also prefer a sinking pellet to a flake.

Ingredients: Whole Antarctic Krill, Whole Fish, Whole Wheat Flour, Ulva Seaweed, Chlorella Algae, Beta Carotene, Spirulina, Kelp, Garlic, Alfalfa, Scallops, Omega-3 Fish Oil, Wakame Seaweed, Spinosum Seaweed, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Niacin, Folic Acid, Biotin, Thiamine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Calcium Pantothenate, L-Ascorby-2-Polyphosphate (Vitamin C), Choline Chloride, Ethylenediamine Dihydroiodide, Cobalt Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate and Manganese Sulfate.
 

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Over the years I have fed my African Cichlids New Life Spectrum and more recently NorthFin. They are the only two brands of fish food (pellet) I have used in the last 15 years. My tropheus are getting NorthFin Veggie with main ingredients: Kelp, Whole Antarctic Krill Meal, High Omega-3 DHA Herring Meal, Whole Sardine Meal, Wheat Flour, Spirulina. Like NLS, the list of ingredients goes on from there. NorthFin Veggie composition: Crude Protein 35% min. Crude Fat 5% min. Crude Fiber 5% max. Moisture 9% max. Ash 10% max. Quite similar to NLS composition percentages. NorthFin and NLS are my favourite two brands.

I have never been a big fan of flake foods after trying them 16 years ago.

Food brands are very emotionally charged discussions. Brace yourself. Much like asking people want is the best compact car or brand of TV.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
"I have never been a big fan of flake foods after trying them 16 years ago"

What didn't you like about flake food?
Yes, I am sure brands are emotional. I went ahead and tried a new brand, the Royal Pet Spirulina 20. I am not loyal to any brand, but figured that the general formulation that I have been feeding them has worked well, so why change drastically.
 

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IDK about punman, but I find pellets less wasteful and cleaner. The fish catch them all as they sink before any escape to pollute the aquascape.
 
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