Univ Calif Davis, Dept Anim Sci, Davis, CA 95616 USA; Kagoshima Univ, Fac Fisheries, Kagoshima 8900056, Japan; Pukyong Natl Univ, Dept Aquaculture, Feeds & Foods Nutr Res Ctr, Pusan, South Korea; Zhejiang Univ, Coll Anim Sci, Hangzhou 310029, Peoples R China; Chinese Acad Sci, Inst Hydrobiol, State Key Lab Freshwater Ecol & Biotechnol, Wuhan 430072, Hubei, Peoples R China
Four 1-week trials were conducted to determine the effects of feeding rates on growth performance and body proximate composition of white sturgeon larvae during each of the first 4 weeks after initiation of feeding. Feeding rates (% body weight day(-1)) were 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, and 60 for trial I; 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 for trial II; and 2.5, 5.0, 7.5, 10.5, 12.5, and 15.0 for trials III and TV Four tanks with 200 larvae each were randomly assigned to each of the six feeding rates. Average initial body weights of the larvae were 49, 94, 180, and 366 mg, respectively, for trials I-IV. The larvae were kept at 19-20 degreesC in circular tanks and fed continuously one of two commercial salmonid soft-moist feeds using automatic feeders. Proximate composition (%) of the feeds for trials I-III and IV were 13.9 and 14.9 moisture, 52.5 and 50.0 crude protein, 10.3 and 12.9 crude fat, and 8.1 and 8.7 ash, respectively. Except mortality in trial I, gain per food fed in trial III, and body ash in all trials, growth performance and body composition were significantly (P<0.05) affected by all feeding rates. Broken line analysis on specific growth rates indicated the optimum feeding rates of white sturgeon larvae to be 26%, 13%, 11%, and 6% body weight day-respectively, for weeks 1, 2, 3, and 4 after initiation of feeding. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.