Effects of dietary inclusion of Spirulina meal on growth and hematological parameters of cultured Asian sea bass, Lates calcarifer
AbstractThis study was conducted to investigate the effects of dietary inclusion of Spirulina platensis on growth performance and hematological parameters of juvenile Asian sea bass (Lates calcarifer) reared in a freshwater culture system. Five experimental diets were prepared by replacing fish meal protein with the microalga at replacement levels of 5% (SP5), 10% (SP10), 20% (SP20) and 30% (SP30), and the substitution effect was compared with a control diet (Con) in which fish meal was the sole protein. Fish were stocked in net cages placed in a 150-ton tank with a stocking density of 20 fish per cage. After 8 weeks of feeding trial, the fish did not show any significant differences in growth performance but numerically higher weight gain and specific growth rate were achieved in the fish stock fed diet SP10 compared to other treatments. Feed conversion ratio and survival rate of fish were significantly affected by the inclusion of Spirulina in the diets. Except for crude ash content, whole-body proximate composition of the experimental fish was also significantly influenced by the diets. Regarding the effects of diets on blood parameters, only hematocrit, hemaglobin, HDL-c and AST were significantly affected by the inclusion of Spirulina in the diets. This study demonstrated that Spirulina could replace up to 10% of FM protein in practical diets of juvenile Asian sea bass without negative effects on growth performance. However, replacement of fish meal with Spirulina meal at 5% might be considered for commercial use considering a significant decrease in survival above this value.