Seaweed meal as a protein source for the white shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei
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- da Silva, R.L. & Barbosa, J.M. J Appl Phycol (2009) 21: 193. doi:10.1007/s10811-008-9350-4
The rhodophytes Hypnea cervicornis and Cryptonemia crenulata are abundant along the Brazilian coastline and are rich in nutrients. They may therefore be used as a source of protein in shrimp diets. The aim of the present study was to test this hypothesis. The experiment was conducted in a laboratory, where 10-day-old post-larvae aged underwent 7 days of acclimation in a 1,000 L tank. They were then kept in plastic aquariums, each containing 10 L, and 20 larvae were fed daily (10% of biomass) in four equal portions with one of four diets (five repetitions of each) for a period of 45 days. All diets contained 30% crude protein (isoprotein) and 300 kcal 100 g−1 (isocaloric), with different percentages of seaweed powder: Diet “A” 39%; Diet “B” 26%, Diet “C” 13%, and Diet “D” without seaweed (control diet). Algae were collected, rinsed, dried and ground up for the feed formulations. Weight of the animals was measured at the beginning of the experiment and at 15-day intervals to assess their growth. The physico-chemical variables of the water were measured every 2 days. Final biomass, biomass gain and specific growth rate (SGR) exhibited no significant differences between treatments (P > 0.05). Survival rate was equal under the four experimental conditions, being consistent within four decimal places 95.2% to 97.00% (P > 0.05). Diets “A” and “B”, with a greater content of algae, exhibited better feed conversion (1.79:1 and 1.82:1) than Diets “C” and “D” (2.04:1 and 2.08:1) (P < 0.05). The physical-chemical variables of the water showed no significant variation and remained within the standards necessary for the wellbeing of the animals. If sufficient biomass of beached algae can be practically and economically collected, it may be used as a component in the making of shrimp feed.