Aquaculture Feed and Fertilizer Resources Information System

Common carp - Feeding methods

Feeding in fishponds

Growing fry of common carp are fed according to the number of stocked larvae, i.e. at about 0.1–0.15 g/stocked larvae/day. This ratio should be gradually increased to 0.4–0.5 g/stocked larvae/day by the end of the advanced fry rearing period. Size of the feed particles is also important and should be adjusted to the mouth size of the growing fry. During the first week, a well-powdered mixture of feeds (Table 6.1) is recommended to be distributed. Later the size of the feed particles may be increased (1–3 mm) (Horváth and Tamás, 1981).

In ponds, the frequency of distribution of feeds for fingerlings, growers and table fish is very important. In large-scale fish farms, feed is distributed once a day, while the ideal is two smaller portions which is complemented with natural food searched and consumed between feedings.

In the course of fingerling rearing, the total daily portion of feeds should not be more than about 1.5–2 percent of the standing biomass of common carp, as this will force fish to search for natural food. As the price of fingerlings is usually high, it is worthwhile to apply compounded feeds of higher (20–25 percent) protein content (Table 6.1).

Feeding of grower and table fish of common carp with supplementary feeds in pond polyculture is done on the basis of the actual biomass. One of the best guidelines for doing this is given in Table 8.1. Some commercial feeds commonly used in common carp pond polyculture are listed in Table 7.

Feeding in tanks and cages

Feeding of common carp in tanks and cages is done with fully balanced feeds that satisfy all of the nutritional requirements of growing fish. Although each manufacturer has their own product, specific recommendations regarding quantities and frequencies of applied doses (see Table 8.2) may serve as a practical guideline. Some commercial feeds used for rearing common carp in tanks and cages are listed in Table 7.