Effect of stocking densities on growth, production and survival rate of red tilapia in hapa at fish hatchery Chilya Thatta, Sindh, Pakistan - Journal of Fisheries

Journal of Fisheries
Volume 2 Issue 3 December 2014
Pages: 180-186

Effect of stocking densities on growth, production and survival rate of red tilapia in hapa at fish hatchery Chilya Thatta, Sindh, Pakistan

Abdul Malik Daudpota1 • Illahi Bux Kalhoro2 • Sajjad Ali Shah1 • Hameeda Kalhoro3 • Ghulam Abbas4

  1. Directorate of Fisheries Sindh, Livestock and Fisheries Department, Government of Sindh, Pakistan
  2. Department of Anatomy and Histology Faculty of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science, Sindh Agriculture University Tando Jam, Pakistan
  3. Department of Fresh Water Biology and Fisheries, University of Sindh Jamshoro, Pakistan
  4. Centre of Excellence in Marine Biology, University of Karachi, Karachi-75270, Pakistan

Article type: Original article

DOI: dx.doi.org/10.17017/jfish.v2i3.2014.45

Manuscript history

  • Received on 23 Aug 2014
  • Received in revised form on 16 Oct 2014
  • Accepted on 21 Nov 2014
  • Published online on 23 Nov 2014

Abdul Malik Daudpota
of Fisheries Sindh, Livestock and Fisheries Department, Government of Sindh
Email: malik.cemb@gmail.com

Daudpota AM, Kalhoro IB, Shah SA, Kalhoro H and Abbas G (2014) Effect of stocking densities on growth, production and survival rate of red tilapia in hapa at fish hatchery Chilya Thatta, Sindh, Pakistan. Journal of Fisheries 2(3): 180-186. DOI: dx.doi.org/10.17017/jfish.v2i3.2014.45

Table of contents
  > Abstract
> Introduction
> Methodology
> Results
> Discussions
> Acknowledgement
Effect of stocking density on growth, production and survival of red tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus × O. niloticus) were conducted in hapa for 60 days at Chilya Thatta. Tilapia fry (4.5±0.02 cm, 2.0±0.01 g) were stocked into hapa (4.5x2.4x1 m). Three treatments with two replicates were used: T1-200; T2-250 and T3-300 fry/hapa. Fry were fed twice a daily with pelleted feed containing 35% protein, 5% of total biomass. After 60 days, the highest growth were determined in T1 (49.8±0.0 g) while in T3 lowest growth (29.09±0.0 g) was recorded. Production (9.56, 10.13 and 8.12 kg/m3/60days) in T1, T2 and T3 respectively were significantly different (P<0.05) to each other. Feed conversion ratio of 0.48, 0.48 and 0.49 in T1, T2 and T3, respectively not significantly different (P>0.05). Survival was significantly different among treatments (P<0.01). Highest survival (100%) was attained in T1 with lower stocking density, followed by T2 (98%) and T3 (95%). Water quality parameters recorded throughout the study period were found within the ranges for fish culture such as temperature 27.2 to 28.5 °C, dissolved oxygen 5.8 to 6.4 mg/l, pH 6.9 to 7.6, ammonia from 0.45 to 0.51 mg/l, hardness 106 to 110 ppm and nitrite 0.151 to 0.162 mg/l.
Stocking density, growth performance, survival, red tilapia, production, hapa
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Aquaculture is rapidly gaining importance due to increase in human population and reduced natural fisheries resources. Pond aquaculture is growing fast in many Asian countries (Azim et al. 2003). Due to omnivore in feeding, survive in poor water quality, breed easily in confined different types of water body and cheap source of animal protein in human diet fish farmers consider tilapia into farming (Pillay 1990). Today, tilapia has become one of the most common farm raised fish in the world, after the carps in terms of total production (Watanabe et al. 2002).

Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), Mozambique tilapia (O. mossambicus) and blue tilapia (O. aureus) are the most commercially important species found in the genus Oreochromis. Red tilapia were first isolated in Taiwan by crossing of O. niloticus with a red O. mossambicus. They are presently produced in the United State of America, Philippines, Greece, Israel, Jamaica, India and other countries (Wohlfarth et al. 1990). Intensive culture of tilapias in concrete tanks is practiced in some Asian countries such as Taiwan, Malaysia and Philippines etc. Red tilapias are cultured in 100 m2 octagonal tanks with exchange of water and aeration, with weighing of 100 to 200 g and with the densities 50 to 100/m2. The growing popularity of tilapia among consumers and the always increasing need to improve production of food, execute the need to seek production alternatives to culture tilapia. Red hybrid tilapia are gaining popularity among culturists due to their resemblance to premium marine species such as sea bream (Chrysophrys major) and red snapper (Lutjanus campechanus) (Fitzgerald 1979, Liao and Chen 1983, Fassler 1984, Stickney 1986) and excellent growth and feed conversion rates in freshwater (Liao and Chen 1983). Production culture is conducted “extensively” in pond systems or more “intensively” in cages and tanks. Tilapia grows well at high densities in the confinement of tanks when good water quality is maintained. Tilapia fry can be produced in ponds, hapas and concrete tanks (Bautista 1987, AIT 1994). Hapa are commonly used in the Philippines (Santiago et al. 1985, Bautista 1987) and Thailand (Little et al. 1995, 1997; AASP 1996). A hapa-in-pond system, has been developed through intensive research efforts over the last decade (AASP 1996; Little et al. 1995, 1997; Bhujel et al. 1998). This involves spawning, rearing and culture of tilapia fish in large nylon hapa on fertilization and artificial feed in ponds this technology has been commercialized recently and proven to be economically viable (Little et al. 1997, Bhujel 1997). Acceptance of this technology is now taking place rapidly because of its ability to carry large quantities of good quality tilapia seed surely (Bhujel et al. 1998). Stocking density can influence seed production in tilapia culture conditions (Hughes and Behrends 1983, Guerrero and Guerrero 1985, Obi and Shelton 1988).The effect of various stocking densities and sex ratios on hatchery production of tilapia was reported in land-based (concrete tanks) and lake-based (hapa nets) systems (Bautista et al. 1988). Studies concerning the relationship between stocking density and growth of tilapia have shown that optimal stocking density for obtaining the highest possible fish yields depend upon the amount and the quality of food available (Zonneveld and Fadholi 1991). However, the use of high stocking density as a technique to maximize water usage and thus increase stock production has also been shown to have an adverse effect on growth (Trzebiatowski et al. 1981, Andrews et al. 1971, Refstie 1977, Essa and Nour 1988, Schreck et al. 1985).

The rate of stocking is decided based on the expected growth increment of fish species and production levels, provided with a given level of input (Liu and Chang 1992). It has been also investigated that fish stocked at higher stocking density reduced growth performance due to some factors. Stocking density is a key factor to achieve the optimum production because it is directly associated with physiological and physical parameters like, water quality, capacity, nutrition, and type of culturing system, biochemical stages (Islam et al. 2006). Stocking density is also found suitable to overcome the problem of land shortage (Ahmad et al. 2004). The full utilization of space for maximum fish production through intensive culture can improve the profitability of the fish farm. On the other hand, several studies have indicated an inverse relationship between the stocking density and growth rate of tilapia (Ridha et al. 2006). In practice, the densities at which growers keep their stock are based on knowledge and organization, with codes of practice and handbooks being used as a guide. Yet no information is available about of the Red Tilapia, hybrid (O. mossambicus × O. niloticus). Therefore Present study was conducted to observe the effect of different stocking densities on growth performance, survival and production rate so that this information can be transferred to the local fish farmers what is the optimal stocking density will be beneficial to get maximum production from minimum resources in Pakistani environment.
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The study was conducted in six hapa (4.6×2.4×1.0 m) each were installed in a rectangular concrete pond size (15.24×7.62×1.2 m) with the help of rope and clips at Fish Hatchery Chilya Thatta, Sindh, Pakistan. Treatment replicates were randomly distributed to the hapa and stocked with red tilapia (hybrid) fry collected from the Chilya Hatchery and acclimatized for 5 days. After acclimatization, fry of red tilapia (mean initial weight, 2.0±0.01 g; and mean length 4.5±0.02 cm respectively) were reared for 60 days (June to July 2012) at three different stocking density groups of 19, 24 and 29 fish/m3 corresponding to 200 (T1), 250 (T2) and 300 (T3) fry per hapa (replicated twice). To prepare formulated feed from locally available ingredients such as fish meal, mustard oil cake (MOC), rice protein, rice bran, wheat bran, wheat flour and vitamin premix were ground thoroughly and sieved to pass through 0.5 mm mesh size. An experimental diet was formulated contain 35% protein. All ingredients were mixed together then put into the manually operated pellet machine for the preparation of pellet feed of diameter 1 mm. The composition of pellet feed is shown in (Table 1). The fish were fed thrice a day at 8:30 am, 12:30 pm and 4:30 pm with 5% of the biomass. Fish from each replicate treatment were randomly sampled and weighed fortnightly and released to the hapa. Their weights were taken with an electronic scale to the nearest 0.01 g after gently blotting with a towel. During sampling, 15% of the stocked fish in each hapa were scooped out with a scoop net and weighed individually and based on the weight gains feed was adjusted accordingly. After the sixty (60) days of culture period. All the fish in the hapa were weighed individually and the total number of fish in each hapa counted. Growth response and survival rate were calculated with following parameters (ANOVA followed by DNMRT 1995):

Weight Gain = Mean final weight – Mean initial weight
Daily Weight Gain = Fresh weight gain in fish (g) / Culture period (days)     
Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR) = (Wet weight gain/Dry feed intake) x 100
Specific growth rate/day (SGR)=  [(Log final weight – Log initial weight) × 100] / Culture period (days)
Survival rate (SR)  = (Final number of fish/Initial number of fish) x 100
Condition factor (CF) = (final weight/final lenght3) x 100

Table 1: Ingredients of formulated feed with 35 % gross protein level
Table 1: Ingredients of formulated feed with 35 % gross protein level

The water quality parameters such as temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen (DO), alkalinity, ammonia, hardness and nitrite were monitored daily throughout the experimental period. Water temperature of the tanks was measured with the help of thermometer (G H ZEAL LTD-LONDON-ENGLAND). Water oxygen of the tanks was measured by using an oxygen meter (JENWAY 9500 DO2 Meter). A pH meter (EZDO-6011 CE) was used to measure the pH of water. API NH4+/NH3 ammonium test kit was used to determine the values of ammonia and nitrite. Hardness was determined by Hanna (HI3812) Hardness Kit. All analyses were done in the laboratory of fish hatchery Chilya Thatta.

Statistical Analysis: One way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to determine the effects of stocking density on the growth and survival rate of Red Tilapia (Hybrid). This was followed by Duncan’s New Multiple Range Test (DNMRT), (Duncan 1995) at 5% level of significance to study any difference among treatment means.

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The growth parameters of red tilapia (hybrid) in different treatments in terms of mean weight gain, weight gain, daily weight gain, SGR, FCR, survival (%) production (kg/m3/60 days) and total yield (kg) were calculated and are presented in Table 2 and Figure 1. Growth of red tilapia in hapa indicated that the growth rate varied among different treatments. T1 showed significantly (P<0.05) highest growth rate among the treatments. The net length and weight gain of individual fish in T1 was higher (15.95 cm and 47.8 g) than those of T2 (14.47 cm and 42.5 g) and (12.1 cm and 29.09 g) in T3 respectively. The survival and specific growth rates were also found highest in T1 (100% and 1.69 respectively) followed by T2 (98% and 1.64), while significantly (P<0.05) lowest survival rate and SGR was recorded (95% and 1.46) in T3. The daily weight gain was 0.83 in T1, 0.74 in T2 and 0.52 in T3, FCR was more or less same in all treatments, 0.48 in T1, 0.48 in T2, and 0.49 in T3 respectively. Table 2 shows that the values obtained for feed conversion ratio were not significantly different among treatments (P>0.05). Total production of red tilapia was 10.13, 9.56 and 8.12 kg/m3/60 days in T2, T1 and T3 respectively. Overall production of T2 and T1 was significantly higher than T3.

Table 2: Comparison of growth parameters of red tilapia on different stocking densities at fish hatchery Chilya Thatta
Table 2: Comparison of growth parameters of red tilapia on different stocking densities at fish hatchery Chilya Thatta

Figure 1: Weight gain of Red tilapia on three treatments during 60 days study period
Figure 1:
Weight gain of Red tilapia on three treatments during 60 days study period

The mean values of the water parameters are shown in Table 3. All water quality parameters measured had no significant differences among treatments (P>0.05). Mean temperature ranged from 27.2 to 28.5 °C. Concentrations of dissolved oxygen ranged from 5.9 to 6.4 mg/l, pH from 6.9 to 7.6 mg/l, ammonia from 0.42 to 0.50 mg/l, hardness 106 to 110 ppm and nitrite from 0.151 to 0.162 mg/l. Water parameters were within tolerable range throughout the experimental period.

Table 3: Showed month-wise variation in water quality parameters in hapa throughout the study period
Table 3: Showed month-wise variation in water quality parameters in hapa throughout the study period
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The effect of stocking density on growth and survival of red tilapia was conducted and observed that the growth performance of fry in hapa varied on different stocking densities. T1 showed significantly highest growth among the treatments (P<0.05). The net length and weight gain of individual fish in T1 was higher than those of T2 and T3 respectively. These results match with the findings of (Haque et al. 1984, Kawamoto et al. 1957) who achieved best growth at lower stocking densities. It is well-known fact that growth rate progressively increases as the stocking density decreases and vice-versa. This is because a relatively less number of fish of similar size in a pond could get more space, food, less competition and dissolved oxygen etc. reported by various authors (Johnson 1965, Wiener and Hameman 1982, Haque et al. 1984, Irwin et al. 1999, Ahmed 1982, Benetti et al. 2002, Narejo et al. 2005 and 2010, Hanibal et al. 2011).

The percentage of survival as recorded in the present study was 100, 98 and 95% for T1, T2 and T3 respectively these results are similar with the findings of (Maniruzzaman 2001, Sayeed et al. 2008, Cremer et al. 2002). Survival was found to be negatively influenced by stocking densities. It might be due to the high competition and space among the fishes. Lower density gave larger size and higher survival rate in Clarias macrocephalus reported by Mollah (1985). Lower stocking density showed higher survival of C. angullaris reported by Ita et al. (1989). Survival rates were higher in the larvae of C. batrachus raised at the stocking densities of 2, 4 and 8 fish per liter as compared to those obtained 16 fish/liter reported by Barua (1990). The highest weight gain and survival rate of Heteropneustes fossilis in lower stocking density reported by Narejo et al. (2005 and 2010), highest weight gain and survival rate of Trachinotus blochii on lower stocking density was reported by (Hanibal et al. 2011). Fish production rate were found higher in T2 followed by T1 and T3 was recorded significantly (P<0.05) lower production rate. It might be due higher numbers of fry stocked (250 fry/hapa) and proper feed intake within the space. The present result agreed with the findings of (Mollah 1985, Ita et al. 1989, Barua 1990, Narejo et al. 2005 and 2010, Hanibal et al. 2011) they obtained the highest production from higher stocking density.

The negative correlation between growth rates and stocking density of fish fry has been claimed by a number of authors. It was observed that increased fish biomass of tilapia had a significant negative effect on the final mean body weight (Yi and Lin 2001). Tilapia stocked at a low density showed better growth than at a higher density (Diana et al. 2004). The lower growth performance of tilapia at higher stocking density could have been caused by voluntary appetite dominance, more expenditure of energy because of intense aggressive developmental contact, competition for food and living space (Diana et al. 2004), and increased stress (Ouattara et al. 2003). It was also reported that increasing stocking density of Tilapia fry might have lead to falling social supremacy, resulting in lower individual growth rates (Dambo and Rana 1992).

The water quality parameters were recorded throughout the study period and were within the acceptable ranges for fish culture as reported by (Barua 1990; Narejo et al. 2003, 2005 and 2010; Hannibal et al. 2011; Shah et al. 2014). The results of the present study indicated that a stocking density of (250 fry/hapa) might be suitable for the culture of red tilapia (hybrid) in hapa on artificial feed give optimal growth.
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Authors are very grateful to Mr. Ghulam Mohammad Mahar, Director General Fisheries Sindh; Mr. Ghulam Mujtaba Wadhar, Director Fisheries Sindh (Inland) for providing all facilities during the study period. Authors are also very thankful to Dr. Naeem Tariq Narejo, Professor and Chairmen, Freshwater Biology and Fisheries Department for proper guidance throughout the research period and Mr. M. Aslam Jarwar, Deputy Director Fisheries Sindh, Mr. Mumtaz Ali Sahito, Assistant Director Fisheries (SCCDP) and Mr. Mohammad Wasif Gujjar, Assistant Director Fisheries (Biochemist) for supporting and helping in Laboratories and Feed Mills facilities at Fish Hatchery Chilya Thatta.
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