Title

Characterization of an Experimental Indoor Larval Production System for Red Snapper

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2006

Department

Coastal Sciences, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

Abstract

Over the past several years, we have developed an experimental-scale rearing system for larval red snapper Lutjanus campechanus that combines extensive outdoor production of live-feed zooplankton with intensive larval fish rearing. The salient features of the system are (1) use of size-graded copepods as live feed; (2) culture in clear water; (3) three-phase water management consisting of an initial static water phase followed by a volume-doubling phase in which water is gradually added and, finally, a recirculation-biofiltration phase; (4) a lowered salinity of 25 g/L water; and (5) an indoor location at constant temperature under artificial light. A total of 19,835 juvenile red snapper were produced from 12 larval rearing tanks in three separate batches with an overall survival of 16.5%. Survival varied from 1% to 31% in individual larval rearing tanks. Water quality variables (oxygen, temperature, salinity, total and un-ionized ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, and alkalinity) were not significantly correlated with larval fish survival. A mean number of 5.36 copepods/mL was added daily to larval tanks during the culture period, with a range of 0.57-23.48 copepods/mL. There was no correlation between mean feed rates and survival in individual tanks. The mean residual copepods per milliliter averaged 2.24, with a range of from 0 to 15.86. There was a significant negative correlation between residual copepod density and survival.

Publication Title

North American Journal of Aquaculture

Volume

68

Issue

1

First Page

86

Last Page

91