Characterization of the bacterial flora of mass cultivated Brachionus plicatilis
- Cite this article as:
- Skjermo, J. & Vadstein, O. Hydrobiologia (1993) 255: 185. doi:10.1007/BF00025838
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Bacterial density and composition in association of mass cultivated rotifers (Brachionus plicatilis, SINTEF-strain) was investigated, during experimental conditions identical to the procedures used for preparing rotifers as live food for marine cold water fish larvae. These procedures include cultivation, enrichment with squid meal and acclimation to low temperature by storage of the rotifer culture at 6 °C. Large variations were observed in the number of rotifer associated (1.8–7.6 · 103 colony forming units per rotifer−1) and free-living (0.6–25 107 cells·ml−1) bacteria. An increase of 50–150% in the bacterial number was normally observed after feeding the rotifer with squid meal, but after three days of acclimation at 6 °C, the bacterial numbers decreased to the initial level.
After enrichment of the cultures with squid meal, the similarity in the composition of the bacterial flora between the rotifers and water was reduced. However, acclimation of the culture at 6 °C resulted in better agreement of the rotifer associated flora and that in water. Enrichment of the cultures induced a shift in the bacterial composition from Cytophaga/Flavobacterium dominance to Pseudomonas/Alcaligenes dominance. The bacterial flora of the rotifer cultures are dominated by presumably opportunistic species after enrichment, which may have detrimental effects when rotifers are fed as live food to marine fish larvae.