Growth performance and RNA/DNA ratio of noble crayfish (Astacus astacus) and narrow-clawed crayfish (Pontastacus leptodactylus) fed fish waste diets
New and viable species for aquaponics and integrated multi‐trophic aquaculture (IMTA) in freshwater systems can improve yields and sustainability of aquaculture. Freshwater crayfish species such as Astacus astacus and Pontastacus leptodactylus are omnivorous feeders and considered candidates for feeding on faecal matters in existing aquaculture systems. Feeding trials were conducted to determine growth response and RNA/DNA ratio in freshwater crayfish fed fish waste. Carapace length and wet weight were measured to determine the growth response. Juvenile A. astacus was fed faeces of hybrid striped bass (Morone chrysops × Morone saxatilis) and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), while adult P. leptodactylus was fed with two commercial pellet diets and pikeperch (Sander lucioperca) faeces. The nutritional composition of hybrid striped bass faeces was close to optimal diet composition of A. astacus, and crayfish showed significantly higher carapace growth, weight gain and weight gain per moult as the group fed rainbow trout faeces. The growth of P. leptodactylus was significantly lower in terms of weight gain and weight gain percentage per moult for crayfish fed on pikeperch faeces. Thus, this study can recommend a co‐cultivation of hybrid striped bass and A. astacus within one system, but cannot recommend co‐cultivation of P. leptodactylus with pikeperch. Additionally, this study showed controversial results of RNA/DNA ratio and weight gain of both crayfish species. Thus, RNA/DNA ratio cannot be approved for investigations on crayfish physiological status in controlled feeding experiments if animals are fed with an inadequate diet.
Publication titleAquaculture Research
Department/SchoolInstitute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
PublisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd
Place of publication9600 Garsington Rd, Oxford, England, Oxon, Ox4 2Dg
Rights statementCopyright 2020 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/