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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Integrated Approaches for Improving the Efficiency and Sustainability of Morone and Other Warm Water Fish Production

Location: Harry K. Dupree Stuttgart National Aquaculture Research Center

2010 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Objective 1: Characterize genetic and phenotypic contributions of important production traits for Morone broodstock management and improvement. Sub-Objective 1A. Produce experimental hybrid striped bass families. Sub-Objective 1B. Assess the genetic basis of phenotypic variation of growth in hybrid striped bass. Sub-Objective 1C. Evaluate the performance of hybrid striped bass families under alternate stocking rates. Objective 2: Refine nutrient requirements, evaluate alternate sources of protein, and develop practical feed formulas for Morone culture. Sub-Objective 2A. Refine essential amino acid requirements of advanced juvenile hybrid striped bass using practical ingredients. Sub-Objective 2B. Improve the performance of commercial hybrid striped bass diets in which fish meal is replaced with by-products of poultry processing or a blend of plant products. Sub-Objective 2C. Develop practical feed formulas for hybrid striped bass culture. Objective 3: Develop strategies to improve production system efficiency. Sub-Objective 3A. Define stocking rate/biomass-yield relationship in a mixed suspended growth production system. Sub-Objective 3B. Compare catfish yields in a mixed suspended growth production system scaled up to ponds.


1b.Approach (from AD-416)
Evaluate photothermal manipulation and hormonal stimulation to induce off-season spawning of Morone sp. Evaluate the effects of stocking density, feeds and feeding strategies, and environmental conditions on survival and growth of hybrid striped bass and catfish in tanks/ponds. Characterize the physiological stress response to production practices with respect to environmental, nutritional, and genetic factors. Characterize gender-related production characteristics and develop methods of sex reversal to produce monosex populations. Determine conditions that increase growth-promoting actions of growth factors such as growth hormone, and insulin-like growth factors. Determine the nutrient digestibility of traditional and alternative feed ingredients to replace fish meal. Determine or refine nutrient requirements for different life stages and production systems. Use phenotypic and genotypic characters to evaluate new strains for economically revelant traits. Identify phenotypic and molecular differences among stocks of white/striped bass. Implement a selective breeding program to produce progeny with desired traits. Develop molecular markers for economically relevant traits to aid selective breeding efforts.


3.Progress Report
This report documents progress for the parent Project 6225-31630-006-00D Integrated Approaches for Improving the Efficiency and Sustainability of Morone and Other Warm Water Fish Production initiated Nov 2009 and continues research from Project 6225-31630-005-00D Improving the Production Efficiency and Sustainability of Morone Species Culture. Conditioning white bass and striped bass for spawning was highly successful and allowed us to begin production of experimental hybrid striped bass (HSB) families (Objective 1A) and initiate evaluation of their growth traits in earthen ponds (Objective 1B) much earlier than anticipated. We produced 23 half-sib families (793,000 larval fish total), tagged individual fingerlings, and initiated evaluation of familial growth traits in communally stocked ponds. We initiated a study to determine the effect of maternal size and age on sunshine bass larvae and fingerlings. Each of the 23 half-sib families were sampled just after hatching and just prior to initiation of feeding; the data will be used to determine the optimum age and size of maternal broodstock to maximize larval traits. Under Objective 2B and in collaboration with producers and a feed supplier we initiated tank trials to examine the effects of feed composition, supplemental amino acids, and feeding intensity on nutrient and energy retention in two size classes of HSB raised at elevated temperatures. Under Objective 2C, progress was made in identifying potential fish meal substitutes for commercial diets and in testing a combination of soybean meal (SB) and poultry by-product meal (PBM) as fish meal substitutes for HSB production. In collaboration with other ARS and USFWS researchers a variety of novel ingredients from the biofuel and plant processing industries were identified, analyzed, and extruded for feeding to HSB. In collaboration with ARS and University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff researchers we evaluated Alaskan pollock viscera meal as a substitute for menhaden fish oil in HSB and striped bass diets and found that at least half of the menhaden fish oil could be replaced without affecting fish performance or quality. We completed a two-year study with Kentucky State University that evaluated fish meal substitutes and protein level in HSB diets. Results suggest that a SB-PBM combination supplemented with methionine and lysine can completely replace fish meal without affecting HSB performance or quality. Under Objective 3A, we made progress in quantifying the stocking rate/biomass relationship for catfish reared in a mixed-suspended growth production system. A study was initiated in earthen ponds to quantify the growth response of the channel x blue hybrid catfish to daily exposure during the summer growing season to different minimum dissolved oxygen concentrations.


Review Publications
Fuller, S.A., McEntire, M.E., Ludwig, G.M. 2010. Development and testing of a pedigree marking system using visible implant elastomer tags for selective improvement in Morone breeding programmes. Aquaculture Research. 41:1250-1254.

Rawles, S.D., Gaylord, T.G., Snyder, G.S., Freeman, D.W. 2010. The influence of protein and energy density in commercial diets on growth, body composition, and nutrient retention of sunshine bass Morone chrysops x Morone saxatilis reared at extreme temperature. Journal of the World Aquaculture Society. 41:165-178.

Green, B.W. 2010. Effect of channel catfish stocking rate on yield and water quality in an intensive, mixed suspended-growth production system. North American Journal of Aquaculture. 72:97-106.

Last Modified: 4/23/2014
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