An evaluation of the complete replacement of both fishmeal and fish oil in diets for juvenile Asian seabass, Lates calcarifer



Glencross B, Blyth D, Irvin S, Bourne N, Campet M, Boisot P & Wade NM (2016) An evaluation of the complete replacement of both fishmeal and fish oil in diets for juvenile Asian seabass, Lates calcarifer. Aquaculture, 451, pp. 298-309.

An experiment was conducted to examine the potential for the complete replacement of fishmeal (FM) and fish oil (FO) in diets for barramundi,Lates calcarifer. A series of diets were formulated to the same digestible protein and energy specifications, but which were designed with FM inclusion levels at 300, 200, 100 or 0g/kg and FO at 100%, 30%, 15% or 0% of the added oil in the diets (4×4 factorial design). Ricebran oil was the alternative oil used in the growth study, while soybean meal and poultry meal were the main alternative protein sources used. For the growth study, fish of an initial weight of 154.4±1.1g were randomly allocated across 48 tanks (three replicates per treatment). After eight weeks, the average weight gain across all treatments was 187.7±2.3g/fish and feed conversion across all treatments averaged 1.04±0.01 feed/gain. A significant effect of FM on both feed intake and weight gain was observed, and this was observed as early as within the first few weeks, but no similar such effect was observed with FO. No effects were observed on protein deposition efficiency, though both lipid and energy deposition efficiencies were affected by FM level. The reduction in FO had a notable effect on the fatty acid composition of the diets and subsequently the fish fatty acid composition. Expression of key LC-PUFA metabolism genes in the liver of the fish was influenced by both FM and FO levels, but was only significant at the extremes of the treatment ranges. The results from this study demonstrate that there is clear potential to replace almost all the FM content of barramundi diets without loss of fish performance, up to and including diets with as little as 100g/kg fishmeal. Replacement of fish oil was more successful with the ability to completely replace all FO demonstrated at all but the lowest inclusion levels of FM. These results clearly demonstrate that the near complete replacement of both FM and FO in barramundi diets is a technical reality.

Barramundi; Nutrition; Feed; FIFO; Replacement; Nutrigenomics

Aquaculture: Volume 451

Publication date20/01/2016
Publication date online14/09/2015
Date accepted by journal09/09/2015

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Professor Brett Glencross
Professor Brett Glencross

Honorary Professor, Institute of Aquaculture