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The use of alternative prey (crayfish, Procambarus clarki, and hake, Merlucius gayi) to culture Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier 1797)
Domingues, P.; Garcia, S.; Hachero-Cruzado, I.; Lopez, N.; Rosas, C. (2010). The use of alternative prey (crayfish, Procambarus clarki, and hake, Merlucius gayi) to culture Octopus vulgaris (Cuvier 1797). Aquacult. Int. 18(3): 487-499
In: Aquaculture International. Springer: London. ISSN 0967-6120, more

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Keywords
    Cultures; Growth; Predation; Prey selection; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Domingues, P.
  • Garcia, S.
  • Hachero-Cruzado, I.
  • Lopez, N.
  • Rosas, C.

Abstract
    The effects of two alternative prey (crayfish and hake) were tested on growth and survival of both juveniles and adults of Octopus vulgaris in two experiments. Octopuses fed the control (squid) were larger (3.0 ± 0.7 kg) than those fed crayfish (2.4 ± 0.6 kg) at the end of experiment I. Similarly, overall growth rates were higher for octopuses fed squid (1.7 ± 0.3 and 1.2 ± 0.2 %BW day−1, respectively). Average feeding rates for the experiment were not different, being 6.5 ± 0.9 and 7.5 ± 0.9 %BW day−1, respectively, for octopuses fed either squid or crayfish. Nevertheless, food conversions for the experiment were higher (42.4 ± 2.7%) for octopuses fed squid compared to the ones fed crayfish (23.9 ± 1.9 g). For experiment II, hake and crayfish were compared to squid; the final weight of octopuses fed squid, hake or crayfish was 1,183.0 ± 242.7 g, 1,175.6 ± 240.1 g and 922.3 ± 160.1 g, respectively. Overall growth rates for the experiment were 1.9 ± 0.2 %BW day−1, 1.9 ± 0.3 %BW day−1 and 1.1 ± 0.3 g, respectively. Final weight and growth rates were never different (P > 0.05) between octopuses fed squid and hake, but were always higher (P < 0.05) compared to the ones fed crayfish. Average feeding rates for experiment II were similar for the three diets, and of 4.6 ± 1.5, 4.2 ± 1.3 %BW day−1 and 5.1 ± 0.9 %BW day−1, respectively, for octopuses fed squid, hake or crayfish. Food conversions for experiment II were of 41.0 ± 9.6%, 40.5 ± 9.9% and 21.3 ± 7.4 g, respectively, for octopuses fed squid, hake or crayfish, and were always higher for octopuses fed squid and hake compared to crayfish. The results indicate that crayfish is not an adequate replacement for the usual prey to fatten octopus, even considering its much lower market price.

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