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My Fish Are Nibbling At My Toes When I Swim. Why Is This Happening And How Can I Stop It? – Pond & Lake Q & A

My Fish Are Nibbling At My Toes When I Swim. Why Is This Happening And How Can I Stop It?

My Fish Are Nibbling At My Toes When I Swim. Why Is This Happening And How Can I Stop It? Holly – Wiggins, CO

…Or We’ll Feed Ya To Da Fishes

While we love hand feeding our fish from time to time, nothing ruins your day faster than taking a dip in your cool refreshing pond water only to be reduced to an overgrown chew toy. No one wants to swim in a pond where they feel they may be next one the menu, so how do you stop your touchy feely finned friends from taste testing you and your friends?

It is common to have the smaller prey fish in your pond try to make a quick meal out of your fingers and toes than their larger predator counterparts. It is a sign that your pond may be imbalanced, creating a shortage of food for your smaller fish. They are simply trying to find a snack wherever possible and that includes your precious phalanges. Keep tabs on your fish population to make sure you have a balanced ratio of 3 prey fish to every predator. If you have an abundance of smaller fish in the pond you may want to introduce some minnows into the water to give them a quick and easy meal that can be replenished over time. If your pond does have an unbalanced population, investigate why this may be. Make sure you have adequate habitat in the pond for your small fish to hide and mature and if you feel your fish are having trouble finding enough food consider manually feeding them using a quality fish food like Game Fish Grower Fish Food. If you are not quite sure what or how to feed your fish read our Fish Food Blog. Also for some great tips on adding habitat to your pond click over to our Creating Habitat Blog.

Pond Talk: Do your fish nibble at you when you swim in your pond?

The Pond Guy® Game Fish Grower - Fish Food

9 Responses

  1. OK, I’m looking here because I have swam in our friends’ ponds in South Florida for years. After convincining my friend that the fish just nibble and don’t hurt, she got in the pond with me. After about just 10 minutes, a Blue Gill (I think) grabbed my back and did a shake (it really hurt) and I yelled and jumped out, leaving my terrified friend to get out on her own! This guy not only drew blood, but left a tooth in my back, which my terrified friend dug out and showed me (with my blood all over her hands)! Shocked the heck out of me! Any other experiences like this? My friend that owned the pond WAS out of town and hadn’t fed them in a ew days…

  2. Oh. People actually dislike this? I think it’s kind of awesome. I just half tune it out, like the water… it just becomes a great part of the experience, unless one of them hits a weird ticklish spot, and then I can’t help giggling a little! I always loved the feel of minnows nomming my hands and feet!

  3. I can’t imagine being “put off” by little fishy kisses — now, if we’re talking barracudas or piranhas it might be different. But baby carp, as I suspect may be the offenders, here, are notably curious and adventurous. To me, such acceptance by little fish, when we enter their element, is downright endearing.

  4. I don’t mean to sound callous, but seriously, what’s the big deal? You have a pond to be closer to Nature (I’m guessing) and the nibbling is a natural, cute thing the fish do.You aren’t going to stop them except by staying out of the pond!

  5. we have only minnows in our 1/8th acre pond and they nibble a bit, but no harm

  6. Our koi come up to nibble us all the time when we feed them. We figure its just their way to play or interact with us. No teeth, No harm , no hurt.

    • I don’t think mine are nibbling but they are coming close to me. They bump into me and then swim away. I’m not really in favor of this but I have to replant the stuff they dig up during the night.

    • how do you get them to come and take food from them mine seem to be scared when you walk up to the pond…

    • Our grandkids think it’s great to feel the koi “bite” their fingers and it dosen’t hurt!

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