Feeding Koi

Koi Feeding Guide

Koi Feeding Guide

A Koi's metabolism functions best at temperatures above 70° F.  High protein foods are difficult to digest when the water falls below  65° F.  

However, Koi still need sufficient carbohydrates for energy when water temperatures are low.  This is particularly true for Koi less than 1 year old. 

Squash, bread, peas, citrus fruits, and watermelon are good sources of carbohydrates. Never overfeed your fish! Koi do not have a stomach.  Feed smaller quantities more frequently for better nutritional absorption.  

Feed only as much as the fish will eat in about 3-5 minutes.  Koi pellets should be fresh and used within three months to prevent oxidation of the food.

Water Temp. (°F.)

Feeding Frequency

Food Type

Less than 50ºF.

Do not feed Koi.

Temperatures at 50° F. of more than one month may require supplemental feedings of low protein and high carbohydrates.


2-3 times a week if Koi are hungry.

High carbohydrate, low protein, laxative type foods.  Wheat germ, Cheerios®, squash, lettuce and brown bread.


4-5 times per week if Koi are hungry.

Add low protein (25%) pellets along with vegetables.  Increase quantities gradually as temperature increases.


Once per day six days per week.

Low protein (25%) pellets along with high carbohydrate vegetables and fruit.


Once per day every day.

Gradually increase protein in pellets (35%) and quantity of pellets.  Vary diet with vegetables and fruit.


Once or twice per day.

Bulk of diet should be 35% protein pellets.  Add fruits, vegetables, and plankton for variety.


3 to 4 times per day.

High protein pellets (35% to 40%) with color enhancers.  Add plankton, vegetables, fruits, and shrimp.

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