Skip to main content
ARS Home » Southeast Area » Stoneville, Mississippi » Warmwater Aquaculture Research Unit » Research » Research Project #437404

Research Project: Improving the Productivity and Quality of Catfish Aquaculture

Location: Warmwater Aquaculture Research Unit

Project Number: 6066-31000-016-00-D
Project Type: In-House Appropriated

Start Date: Oct 28, 2019
End Date: Oct 27, 2024

Objective:
Objective 1. Enhance selection of channel and blue catfish broodstock for economically important traits. Sub-objective 1.1. Continue selection for increased growth rate and carcass yield in channel catfish, blue catfish and channel catfish x blue catfish hybrids, and establish a selected line of blue catfish to produce improved broodstock. Sub-objective 1.2. Determine magnitude of genetic variation and evaluate potential for including additional traits in channel and blue catfish selection indices. Sub-objective 1.3. Characterize structural variation in the channel and blue catfish genomes and examine the potential for this information to improve the accuracy of estimated breeding values. Objective 2. Improve the efficiency of reproduction for purebred and hybrid catfish. Sub-objective 2.1. Identify and test reproductive pheromones in channel and blue catfish. Sub-objective 2.2. Evaluate the formulation of mammalian Luteinizing Hormone Releasing Hormone analog to improve ovulation and hatching success to improve the efficiency of hybrid catfish embryo production. Sub-objective 2.3. Determine impact of broodfish nutritional strategies on maturation and reproductive performance of channel catfish to maximize hatching success and hybrid catfish fry production. Objective 3. Increase efficiency of warmwater aquaculture by developing and improving production systems and management practices. Sub-objective 3.1. Model split-pond ecosystem dynamics to optimize design and performance. Objective 4. Improve catfish product quality by identifying and managing pre-harvest factors that affect the quality of catfish products. Sub-objective 4.1. Isolate and identify geosmin-producing species of cyanobacteria from catfish aquaculture ponds and determine the seasonal occurrences of blooms of these noxious cyanobacteria species. Sub-objective 4.2. Determine the efficacy of using sodium carbonate peroxyhydrate (SCP) in managing undesirable blooms of cyanobacteria in west Mississippi catfish ponds. Sub-objective 4.3. Determine the effects of pond culture systems on fillet flavor and texture of hybrid catfish.

Approach:
In order to enhance selection of channel and blue catfish broodstock for economically important traits we will continue selection for increased growth rate and carcass yield in channel catfish, blue catfish, and channel x blue catfish hybrids, and establish a selected line of blue catfish to produce improved broodstock; determine the magnitude of genetic variation and evaluate potential for including additional traits in channel and blue catfish selection indices; and characterize structural variation in the channel and blue catfish genomes and examine its potential to improve the accuracy of estimated breeding values. In order to improve catfish reproductive efficiency, we will identify reproductive pheromones of channel and blue catfish; evaluate the formulation of mammalian Luteinizing Hormone Releasing Hormone analog to improve ovulation and hatching success to improve the efficiency of hybrid catfish embryo production; and determine the impact of broodfish nutritional strategies on maturation and reproductive performance of channel catfish to maximize hatching success and hybrid catfish fry production. In order to increase the efficiency of warmwater aquaculture by developing and improving production systems and management practices, we will model split-pond ecosystem dynamics to optimize system design and performance. In order to improve catfish product quality by identifying and managing pre-harvest factors that affect the quality of catfish products, we will isolate and identify geosmin-producing species of cyanobacteria from catfish aquaculture ponds and determine the seasonal occurrences and blooms of these noxious cyanobacteria species; determine the efficacy of using sodium carbonate peroxyhydrate (SCP) in managing undesirable blooms of cyanobacteria in west Mississippi catfish ponds; and determine the effects of pond culture system on fillet flavor and texture of hybrid catfish.