Utilization of Caridina nilotica (Roux) meal as a protein ingredient in feeds for Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus)
Ngugi, Charles C.
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The effects of replacing fish meal with Caridina nilotica as a protein ingredient on growth performance, nutrient utilization, carcass, proximate composition and economic benefits in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) culture was evaluated. Replacement of the FM with C. nilotica was done at 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% (D25, D50, D75 and D100) and the substitution effects was compared with the control diet (D0, 0% C. nilotica). After 140 days of culture, the best growth performance, nutrient utilization and economic benefits occurred in fish groups fed diets with 25% C. nilotica inclusion. However, growth performance in fish fed diets D50 and D75 were comparable with the control (P > 0.05). At 100% substitution level of FM with C. nilotica, the growth performance and fish survival was lower than control. Protein and lipid contents in the fish and their digestibilities were highest in diet D25 and decreased with increasing levels of substitution of FM with C. nilotica. This study demonstrate that utilization of local protein sources (C. nilotica) can be effectively used to replace up to 75% of FM in the diets without compromising growth performance, survival, nutrient utilization and economic benefits in O. niloticus culture.