An automatic feeder should not be used to feed your fish on a regular basis, since it can’t regulate the amount of food in the way that you can by watching what the fish eat. But it can be used on a temporary basis. It’s a good idea to test the feeder a few days before you go away to make sure it is working properly.
Feeders range from the simple battery operated type to state-of-the-art electronic devices. If your fish eat food which tends to clump in high humidity, choose a feeder with humidity protection.
For proper fish nutrition, make sure you also have an automatic lighting timer for when you can’t be there to flip the switch. Fish feed according to day/night cycles and need to be cued that it is time to eat.
An alternative to using an automatic fish feeder is to ask a friend or neighbor to feed the fish while you are gone. If the fish feeder is not experienced, divide the food into portions and don’t leave extra food lying around, to prevent accidental overfeeding.
Even with an automatic feeder, someone should look in at least once a week to make sure everything is working properly.