Marine Biology

, Volume 154, Issue 5, pp 855–865 | Cite as

Lipid and protein utilisation during early development of yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi)

  • Zoë HiltonEmail author
  • Carolyn W. Poortenaar
  • Mary A. Sewell
Original Paper


The pelagic yellowtail kingfish Seriola lalandi has become a target species for aquaculture in Asia and Australasia. Australasian production is reliant on larviculture from eggs of captive brood stock; however, knowledge regarding the nutritional requirements of larvae of this species is still scarce, particularly in relation to lipids. As a first step in establishing these requirements, eggs and larvae from captive S. lalandi brood stock were examined for differences in total protein, total lipid and lipid classes between individual spawning events, over the spawning season, and during larval development from fertilisation to 15 days post hatch. Results indicate that total protein egg−1 varied significantly between individual spawning events within a season, but neither total lipid nor total protein egg−1 varied significantly across the spawning season. Brood stock egg lipids were made up of approximately 60% phospholipid, 25% wax and/or sterol esters (WE), 15% triacylglycerol (TAG), and small amounts of sterols and free fatty acids. During the early larval period, both WE and TAG were utilised concurrently for energy. The larvae experienced very high mortality around 5–7 days post hatch, which coincided with very low levels of all neutral lipid classes. Although many other factors may also influence larval mortality, these results indicate that lipid provisioning may be an important factor in larval survival during the critical period around first-feeding in this species. Examination of ratios of TAG:ST, often used as a condition index in fish larvae, suggested that some of the larvae were suffering from starvation. However, as egg-derived WE appears to provide a significant source of energy during the early larval period in S. lalandi, it is suggested that WE should be included in any index of larval nutritional state.


Lipid Class Total Lipid Content Lipid Globule Brood Stock Free Amino Acid Pool 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This study was submitted in partial fulfilment of a BSc (Hons) by ZH, and formed part of a more comprehensive larval rearing experiment overseen by staff of the New Zealand National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) at both the Moana Pacific Fisheries Ltd. Pah Farm Aquaculture Facility, Kawau Island, NZ, and the NIWA Mahanga Bay Aquaculture Facility, Wellington, NZ. We would like to sincerely thank the large number of staff at Pah Farm and Mahanga Bay for their assistance. We also thank Wayne Brassett and David Seldon for assistance at Pah Farm, and Lincoln Tubbs for statistical advice. We are very grateful to the anonymous reviewers for their comments which have significantly improved the manuscript. Financial assistance was provided by a School of Biological Sciences Summer Studentship to ZH and contract no. CO1X0002 from the NZ Foundation for Research Science and Technology to NIWA. All experiments performed comply with NZ law and University of Auckland ethical requirements.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zoë Hilton
    • 1
    Email author
  • Carolyn W. Poortenaar
    • 2
    • 3
  • Mary A. Sewell
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Biological SciencesUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand
  2. 2.National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, NIWAAucklandNew Zealand
  3. 3.National Oceans Office Branch, Marine & Biodiversity Division, Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the ArtsKingstonAustralia

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