We review the Petcube Camera Pet Monitor to test if owners will benefit from its HD camera, speakers, and laser toy.
Facts You Must Know
One problem we fish owners all have is that we can't be there to feed our fish all the time. We may ask a neighbor to help us feed the fish while we are away, but what if we don't have the opportunity to get one? The key is to get automatic fish feeders for your aquarium. We look today at seven of these fish feeders, most of which are for home or office aquariums, but one of which is specifically designed for fish ponds. These offer you the convenience of leaving your fish alone while you are away while still feeding them.
We have some pet fish at home, and we often go away on business trips. We've often wanted to find ways to feed fish while we are away, but it often is a challenge to ask someone, as we've mentioned. So it was a good thing when we managed to try some of these automatic fish feeders and figure out the pros and cons of each. We are pleased to report the results now. We hope that what we have to say can help you make an informed choice as to what kind of fish feeder you would like to buy.
Of all the automatic fish feeders we've mentioned in this list, the ASF-1 Super Feeder is clearly meant to be integrated into the Internet of Things. It can be controlled through systems such as the APEX AutoController, or through Super Feed's Smart Socket. (Of course, the manufacturer also allows using an old fashioned lamp timer to help this thing run.) But this is only one aspect of the fish feeder we appreciate. We also appreciate the very flexible portion control device, which is run from the fish feeder's own microcomputer and timer, allowing the feeder to dispense either a few flakes or a lot more besides. The computer releases food according to a timer which runs from a few milliseconds to 70 seconds in total.
In fact, what we value is this automatic fish feeder's flexibility. We can program it for as many cycles as the timer can allow us, but we prefer to stick with a moderate twice a day feeding schedule. The mechanical aperture can be adjusted to fit any size pellet or flake, making it even more flexible for owners whose pet fish require specific kinds of pellets or other fish food. More importantly, the flexibility increases with the use of additional storage extensions to this device which are sold separately. This is a boon for pet fish owners who would like to run this fish feeder for longer periods of time, such as an extended vacation. We are thus definitely going to use this for our next long holiday!
The Saim Fish Feeder is among the pricier ones on this list and it does work, once you've figured out how to work it. The device, like most of the ones we've discussed, has a built-in digital timer and a clamp that attaches itself to the fish tank. This automatic fish feeder is able to feed fish up to five times a day on up to three cycles of its rotating food tank, on a pre-programmed basis. One minor quibble was that we did not find a manual feeding feature on this one. We felt that it would have helped make it more convenient for pet fish owners who want to feed their pets from the device without waiting for the timer to run its course. Otherwise, it is a basic fish feeding device that works when you want it.
One advantage the Saim Fish Feeder has is that it can feed not only food for fish but also for terrarium pets such as turtles, newts, and lizards, something which almost all the feeders we've reviewed have claimed. A word first, though, on fish food. Generally, most of these feeders rely upon pellet food or fish flakes. The risk is that, within a few months, they could grow stale and worthless. The biggest advantage of having automatic fish feeders is that you can not only control how much fish eat, but also that you can store fish food and 'Get rid' of it in good time before it really goes bad! If you are otherwise storing flakes or pellets elsewhere, be sure to dispose of these after three months of opening the package.
Owners of decorative fish ponds holding such fish as koi or carp know one thing: maintenance is always a challenge. If there's one maintenance step that needs to be automated, it is feeding the fish. The P7000 Pond Fish Feeder is an automatic fish feeder that helps solve that problem. It can run from six to nine months on four C size batteries, thus making it very convenient for owners who prefer to set it or forget it. Its weather resistant construction makes it ideal for outdoor weather, which can be fickle in some places. Moreover, its 6.5 pound capacity allows for long times between refilling the fish feeder's semi-transparent storage tank. It can feed fish three times a day, which is still flexible enough for some pond fish owners.
One query we encountered from our research which got us curious was this: would it make a great pet feeder for, say, cats? The answer is yes. Provided that it is adequately protected from other outdoor animals, we could leave the feeder outdoors and let the cats roaming about feed on it up to three times a day. With at least three teaspoons of food dispensed per serving, it is a good idea for terrestrial pets who don't eat as much. But it still is a good thing for fish nevertheless, which is why we would still recommend it for your decorative fish pond. After all, the best thing about your water feature may very well be the very attractive fish swimming in it, happy and nourished. That makes the P7000 Pond Fish Feeder worth it.
A slightly pricier fish feeder, the Aquachef Automatic Fish Feeder was a bit of a challenge to set up. But once we knew how to work it out, it was working okay. The Chinese-made fish feeder runs on a digital timer and has a relatively smaller food tank than other models in its class, but it still is large enough to feed the finickiest fish. The device itself could be attached to the fish's tank so its food slot is as close as possible to the water. It also has a Velcro attachment either for added clamping strength, or in those circumstances where the clamp would not work. Like all other fish feeders, this one runs on batteries, so that one has one less cord to worry about.
The digital timer can be programmed to perform two feedings, which is much less than the others we have reviewed so far. The feeding drum rotates twice a day to drop the food into the fish tank. It may not work for users like us who are concerned about portion control and how often we need to feed fish. The one concern we've heard about is that, after some time, the device powers down automatically and does not work properly. We hope that it is an isolated case which will not affect most users. Before we leave this feeder, though, we were thinking of a question that bothered us: would even feeding fish twice a day with this feeder be a good thing in any case? We believe it is so, if only because most fish would die otherwise.
The EHEIM Everyday Fish Feeder is from a brand that comes highly recommended in many of the reviews we read in preparation for our research. They also make a two-tank model which we will not be discussing here. So we were intrigued when we got our fish feeder and connected it to the tank. One important feature that makes it unique is its integrated fan and ventilation system that helps keep fish food dry. It is a convenience given those long gaps between feeding times and the often damp environment surrounding an aquarium. It keeps fish food from growing stale sooner and saving you money. Apart from that, the device has some standard features which most fish feeders have. including a manual release switch to allow pet fish owners to release fish at any time.
The digital timer for this fish feeder can be programmed at your convenience to accommodate up to eight feeding times. Depending on the amount of food to be dispensed from the 100 mL/3.3 fl. oz. tank, the device can hold enough food to last about six weeks, which makes it convenient for those going to longer trips. For us, though, we were out for the weekend. After carefully following the instructions and setting up the timer and portion control system, we left the device alone and it worked like a charm. A warning, though: if you're using pellets, the fish feeder may spill out most of the contents too quickly if they are below a certain diameter. This is a rare event and hopefully should not happen to most users.
One of the most affordable in the list, the HDE Automatic Fish Feeder can be mounted on any glass or aluminum aquarium frame for ease and convenience. Its food dispenser stays safely out of the water along with the fish feeder's timer so that food does not get soggy or wet. The manufacturers claim that it can work with pellets, fish feed, krill or sticks, though for this trial, which we undertook for a week, we stuck to fish food flakes. There is a slider on the device that determines how much food to dispense, with nine settings for it, that allows the pet fish owner discretion over portion control. The device is programmable up to four feeding times a day, and it makes use of a digital clock system.
One convenient accessory is the bracket that helps the HDE Automatic Fish Feeder attach itself to the tank, which we were easily able to install. Another convenience is the 100 mL/3.3 fl. oz. transparent fish food tank, which allows you to see whether food is running low. In fact, during our trial period, we ran out of food a little too early and we saw it for ourselves that it was. The unit can also be manually operated in case you want to dispense food by yourself. A warning: if you're using flake food as we did, it has to be crushed in order to fit it into the opening. Otherwise, it makes a great feeder not only for aquariums, but also for terrariums where it can feed turtles, newts, or lizards.
We decided to try the Delidl Automatic Food Timer for a couple of weeks when we were away on a trip somewhere. The automatic fish feeder can be attached either to the tank itself, to the hood, or to the condensation tray, depending on the needs of the fish. The device itself can be programmed to six time settings, with a slider determining the amount of food to dispense. This allows users to determine how often to feed the fish and how much, depending on the fish's type and specific nutritional needs. The device runs on a single AA battery, and the manufacturers say that depending on the battery's type, it can run up to a single charge. It is easy to set up and maintain.
Another advantage is that the Delidl Automatic Food Timer holds enough feed for a long period away, and it can feed not only fish, but also turtles, newts, and other creatures. One challenge with this fish feeder is to overcome the language barrier that comes with the instructions, which we had trouble with, before actually figuring out how to set it up. Otherwise, we had little trouble letting it run for the two weeks or so when it came back, but we had to monitor it upon our return to see if it was behaving. We would recommend it to those who want a relatively affordable automatic fish feeder and want it to do the one thing it should be doing: keeping your fish fed.
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