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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: IMPROVING PRODUCTION STRATEGIES IN CHANNEL CATFISH FARMING

Location: Warmwater Aquaculture Research Unit

Title: Evaluation of hydrolyzed poultry feathers as a dietary ingredient for pond-raised channel catfish

Authors
item Li, Menghe -
item Robinson, Edwin -
item Bosworth, Brian
item Oberle, Daniel -
item Lucas, Penelope -

Submitted to: North American Journal of Aquaculture
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: September 12, 2012
Publication Date: January 1, 2013
Citation: Li, M.H., Robinson, E.H., Bosworth, B.G., Oberle, D.F., Lucas, P.M. 2013. Evaluation of hydrolyzed poultry feathers as a dietary ingredient for pond-raised channel catfish. North American Journal of Aquaculture. 75:85-89.

Interpretive Summary: Soybean meal has traditionally been the main protein source in channel catfish diets. However, because soybean meal prices have risen dramatically in the past few years, using less expensive alternative feedstuffs to partially replace soybean meal would reduce feed cost and improve profitability in channel catfish production. One alternative feedstuff is hydrolyzed poultry feathers (HPF) or hydrolyzed feather meal. Prices of HPF vary, and when it is less expensive than soybean meal on equal protein or lysine basis, it may be used in channel catfish diets to partially replace soybean meal. A feeding trial was initiated to evaluate various levels of HPF on channel catfish performance in earthen ponds. Based on ANOVA and regression analysis of the weight gain and net yield data, HPF, with supplemental lysine, may be used at 5% of the diet without marked impact on performance of pond-raised channel catfish. At the time of diet purchase, HPF was more expensive than soybean meal on equal protein or lysine basis, and diets containing HPF cost more than the control diet. However, prices of feedstuffs often vary, and when prices are favorable, 5% HPF may be used to partially replace soybean meal in diets for pond-raised channel catfish. Caution should be taken when using HPF because it reduces carcass and fillet yield.

Technical Abstract: The present study examined the use of hydrolyzed poultry feathers (HPF) as a replacement for soybean meal in diets for pond raised channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus. Four isonitrogenous (28% crude protein) diets were evaluated that contained 0, 5, 10, or 15% HPF. Fingerling Channel catfish (mean ± SD initial weight was 47.5 ± 2.2 g) were stocked into twenty 0.04-ha earthen ponds at a rate of 14,830 fish/ha. Fish were fed once daily to apparent satiation for 140 d. No significant differences were observed for weight gain, feed conversion ratio (FCR), and survival among fish fed various levels of HPF. There were also no significant differences in net yield of fish fed diets containing 0, 5, and 10% HPF, but net yield of fish fed a diet containing 15% HPF was significantly lower than that of fish fed the control diet. Fish on diets containing 5%HPF and above were fed significantly less feed than fish fed the control diet. Regression analysis showed that total amount of diet fed, net yield, and weight gain decreased linearly as dietary HPF levels increased. Based on weight gain and net yield data, 5%HPF with supplemental lysine may be used in channel catfish diets without marked impact on fish growth performance. However, carcass and fillet yield were significantly reduced in fish fed diets containing 5% HPF and higher. Fillet protein generally decreased and fillet fat increased with increasing dietary HPF levels.

Last Modified: 8/21/2014
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