Feeding responses of hatchery-reared gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata L.) to a commercial diet and natural prey items

Type Article
Date 2003-06
Language English
Author(s) Andrew J, Begout Marie-LaureORCID, Kadri S, Holm J, Huntingford F
Affiliation(s) Univ Glasgow, Inst Biomed & Life Sci, Div Environm & Evolutionary Biol, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Lanark, Scotland.
IFREMER, CNRS, Ctr Rech Ecosyst Marins & Aquacoles, F-17137 Lhoumeau, France.
Biomar AS, DK-7330 Brande, Denmark.
Source Marine and Freshwater Behaviour and Physiology (0091-181X) (Taylor & Francis), 2003-06 , Vol. 36 , N. 2 , P. 77-86
DOI 10.1080/1023624031000109864
WOS© Times Cited 15
Keyword(s) Gilthead sea bream, Food handling, Food choice, Chewing, Aquaculture
Abstract Many fish species have evolved feeding mechanisms and behaviours enabling them to feed on specific prey. However, such mechanisms may not be optimal for feeding on commercial-pelleted diets in aquaculture. Gilthead sea bream chew and occasionally eject pellets or parts of pellets from the mouth when feeding on commercial diets. This may result in an increase in nutritional waste from the intensive culture of this species. In this study we examined the prevalence of this food processing behaviour in two sizes of sea bream, feeding on three types of natural prey items in comparison to a commercial pellet, to give an insight into the circumstances in which excess chewing and ejection of food items from the mouth occurred. These included two hard-textured food items (commercial pellet and hard-shelled prey) and two soft-textured food items (larvae and small crustacean). Both sizes of sea bream frequently consumed the soft-textured food types, however large sea bream also frequently consumed hard-textured pellets. Hard-textured food required longer handling times and elicited more chewing and the ejection of food items from the mouth. These results suggest that future investigations on the food processing behaviour and consequent waste when fed commercial diets differing in texture could give an insight into improving diets and feeding efficiency for intensively cultivated gilthead sea bream.
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