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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Zooplankton Succession and Larval Fish Culture in Freshwater Ponds.

item Ludwig, Gerald

Submitted to: Southern Regional Aquaculture Center
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 1999
Publication Date: July 1, 1999

Interpretive Summary: Larval fish culture is both risky and profitable. Small ponds are best and they should be fertilized with organic and inorganic materials in order for a lot of zooplankton feeds to develop. When fry are ready to be stocked into the ponds they vary in size from 2 to 15 mm total length, depending on what species is cultured. For greatest survival, the size of zooplankton in the pond must be small enough for the fry to eat and not so large that the zooplankton eats the fry. Knowledge of zooplankton succession is important in order for the farmer to stock his fry when the right size and type of zooplankton are present. Weather and other factors can affect how many and what types of zooplankton are present. Culturists should be aware that the colder the weather, the longer it takes for most types of fry feeds to appear in a pond. Within a few weeks after the fry are stocked they should be ready to be weaned to artificial feeds. This has to be done before the fry eat all of the zooplankton present in the ponds or the fry will starve.

Technical Abstract: The farm gate value of Arkansas aquaculture production for 1998 totaled $162.8 million. Pond acreage estimated at 73,481 with 150.2 million pounds of fish produced. The economic input of aquaculture to the state is estimated at $1.3 billion. There are at least 300 active fish producers in the state who raise 15 different species. Channel catfish is the leading fish raised with a value of $103.4 million followed by bait fish valued at $37.9 million and other species at $21.5 million.

Last Modified: 4/22/2015
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