Rendiconti Lincei. Scienze Fisiche e Naturali

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 691–697 | Cite as

Captive breeding of the caramote prawn (Penaeus kerathurus) for restocking purpose: effect of single- and mixed-algal diets on larval growth and survival

  • Matteo Ciani
  • Claudio CarereEmail author
  • Giuseppe Nascetti


Attempts to breed crustacean species of commercial interest to promote the conservation, restoration and enhancement of the stocks are increasing. Optimization of diet for larval growth is a crucial step for successful actions. Here we focus on the caramote prawn (Penaeus kerathurus), a primary target of small-scale fishery because of its high commercial value in the North Mediterranean region and particularly in Italy. Three species of microalgae (Isochrysis galbana, Nannochloropsis oculata, and Chaetoceros calcitrans) with different fatty acid contents were used to feed caramote prawn larvae as monospecific diets. Further, C. calcitrans in combination either with I. galbana or N. oculata were tested as mixed diets. Measurements of developmental performance were taken until the larvae metamorphosed to Mysis 1, while survival rate was estimated at day 10 of benthonic post-larval stage. Larvae fed on mixed diets performed as well or slightly better than those fed on single-C. calcitrans and -N. oculata diets both in terms of development and survival, while larvae fed with I. galbana diet performed worse overall. Diets that performed best (C. calcitrans and I. galbana mix) are known to have a higher proportion of the essential fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3), respectively. We suggest that mixed-algal diets could improve the performance of larvae by providing a wider availability of fatty acids.


Larval development Restocking Essential fatty acids Phytoplankton Diet Aquaculture Crustaceans 



We thank Dr. Mario Carere and Dr. Ines Lacchetti (Department of Health and Environment, Italian National Institute of Health, Rome) for providing the algae, and the Fishery Cooperative Harmine (Montalto Marina, Viterbo, Italy) for providing the wild females. European Fisheries Fund to Lazio and Calabria supported restocking actions of decapod crustaceans at the CISMAR. Alessandro Carlini provided invaluable technical support during all phases of the experiments. We thank four anonymous reviewers for their constructive criticisms and insightful suggestions that substantially improved the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ecological and Biological Science, Ichthyogenic Experimental Marine Centre (CISMAR)University of Tuscia (Vt)ViterboItaly

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