Q:

What do fish eat?

A:

Quick Answer

Fish diets vary by species. There are some carnivorous (meat eating) fish, some herbivorous (plant eating), and many omnivorous (both meat and plant eating) fish. For example, the salmon is known as a predatory carnivorous fish, while the saltwater angelfish is herbivorous and the opaleye is omnivorous. The opaleye lives in the Pacific Ocean and feeds on both seaweed and the tiny creatures that live in and on the seaweed.

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What do fish eat?
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Full Answer

The diet of specific fish within each category of herbivorous, carnivorous or omnivorous depends on what is available in their habitat. For example, herbivorous tropical reef fish will focus on eating plant matter that is available to them in a reef setting, including a variety of different kinds of algae. These fish provide an important ecological service in consuming these algae by preventing an overabundance of this microscopic plant matter, which can have a negative impact on coral growth. Similarly, predatory carnivores can have a negative ecological impact if they are introduced into non-native areas by displacing the top predator, causing a disruption in the food chain. One such example of a disruptive carnivorous fish is the snakehead fish, which has become an ecological nuisance in Maryland and Florida.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Is a fish an omnivore?

    A:

    Fish can be omnivores, but some species are carnivores or herbivores. In general, a fish's diet is determined mostly by its habitat and what food is available. Most species have a preferred diet but will eat outside of that if necessary for survival.

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  • Q:

    What do freshwater fish eat?

    A:

    While the specific diet of a freshwater fish depends on its species, most eat smaller fish, leeches, worms, insects, crustaceans, plankton and krill. When kept in an aquarium, freshwater fish can thrive on a combination of fortified flake food, pellets, sticks and wafers.

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    What is the lifespan of a tropical fish?

    A:

    The exact lifespan of a tropical fish varies greatly depending upon the species. In general, larger fish have longer lifespans than smaller fish, and fish that give birth to live young tend to live shorter lives than those that lay eggs.

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  • Q:

    Where do tuna fish come from?

    A:

    Tuna live in the open sea of oceans worldwide, although specific zones are dependent on species. The bluefin tuna, for example, lives in tropical and temperate waters of the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Mediterranean. The bigeye tuna lives in the previously mentioned areas with the exception of the Mediterranean.

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