Sea Life

How Long can Fish go Without Food

How Long can Fish go Without Food

The fish are usually left unattended and hungry when the owners are not at home. They may be visiting some other place or are on vacations. So, in such cases, the pet fish are left alone at home. The fish can survive without food for almost “three days to two weeks”. But, this timespan does not imply fish of all types and ages. Some fish are naturally weak and cannot survive for too long without food. On the other hand, some fish are naturally fit and healthy and they can go long without food. 

So, it largely depends on the age, size and the health status of the fish whether it can survive this generally declared lifespan of three days to two weeks or not. Similarly, there are some external environmental factors that affect the lifespan of the fish in the aquarium.

Environmental Factors That Affect the Lifespan of a Hungry Fish

The most common environmental factors that affect the lifespan of the fish having an empathy stomach are the following:

Cleanliness of the Aquarium

Fish cannot survive in a dirty place for too long. If the water is unhygienic and can contain toxic substances, it will be difficult for the fish to breathe. Ammonia is created in the water due to the fish waste and the metabolism of fish. When the water tank or the aquarium is left unchecked for too long, the amount of ammonia increases and this becomes life threatening for the fish. 

When the ammonia increases to a certain level, the fish inside the aquarium ultimately dies because of the dirty environment. In such a situation, the fish may not even live for the generally believed timespan for fishs’ survival without food.

Water Temperature

Fish can survive in a certain level of temperature and cannot tolerate a major increase or decrease in  that specified level of temperature. When the water temperature, oxygen present in the water starts decreasing and this suffocates the fish inside the aquarium or the water tank. The fish ultimately dies due to lack of oxygen in the water. Similarly, it is difficult for the fish to survive in an environment colder than normal. 

So, it is important to keep the temperature of the water exactly according to a healthy survival of the fish. Mostly, when people leave their home for vacations and leave their fish unattended and hungry, the water temperature increases or decreases and this leads to the death of their pet fish. The pH level of the water must also not exceed or fall behind the desired level for a healthy survival of the fish.

Heath of the Fish

With all the external environmental factors, it is also very important to consider the physical health of the pet fish. Some fish are already sick and they cannot survive even up to three days. Some fish on the other hand are naturally strong and healthy and they can survive for almost fourteen to fifteen days without food easily.

The Bottom-Line 

Fish can normally survive without food for almost three days to two weeks but the fish may live shorter or longer than this specified timespan depending on their own age and health and also the nature of the external environment. A healthy and aged fish will live longer as compared to a baby fish. Also, the environmental factors impact their lifespan for instance, cleanliness of the aquarium, water temperature and pH level of water.

About the author

Hadia Atiq

A Writer passionate about learning and spreading the knowledge of sea life. I like to spread the knowledge of different types and species of fish and other aquatic creatures.