Theses and Dissertations

Title: Condition changes in harvestable-size channel catfish held in ponds overwinter under various feeding regimes

Name: Sirikul, Boonsong

Degree: MS

Chair: Dr. Richard T. Lovell

Resides: FAA Library

University: Auburn

Location: Auburn, Alabama

Date: 1974

Pages: 34

Keywords: Harvestable-Size,Channel Catfish,Overwinter,Feeding Regimes.


On November 24, 1973, pound-size channel catfish which had been fed intensively for the previous 6 months were weighed and measured and placed back into nine, 1/10-acre ponds at the rate of 2,000 per acre. Before placing the fish into the ponds, 100 fish from each pond were individually weighed and measured to determine condition factor (CF). The fish were managed through the winter until March 4, 1974, on one of three feeding regimes: no feeding: feeding 1% of fish weight on alternate days: and feeding 1% of fish weight only on warm days or when water temperature at 3 feet depth was above 54oF. Fish not fed lost 9% of their weight during the 110-day overwinter period, those fed on alternate days received feed on 51 days and gained 23%, and those fed on the warm days received feed on 52 days and gained 19%. Condition factors increased for both groups of fed fish but decreased for the nonfed fish. Length increased slightly for all groups. Although the nonfed fish lost weight they had the highest percentage of body fat, indicating that a significant amount of tissue protein was degraded for energy needs. In an economic comparison for the three overwintering systems, only returns (or losses) above feed costs were considered. Fish not fed showed an average loss of $95 per acre. Fish fed 1% of their weight on alternate days yielded a return above feed costs of $65 per acre and those fed at the same rate except on the warm days yielded $14 per acre.

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