Fish Physiology and Biochemistry

Minimal water volume for intensively producing male Siamese fighting fish ( Betta splendens Regan, 1910)

Water volume is a key parameter affecting the individual rearing of male Siamese fighting fish (Betta splendens Regan, 1910). In this study, minimization of water volume was pursued by assessing growth, feed utilization, digestive enzyme activities, color coordinates, muscle quality, and carcass composition. One-month-old solid-red male fish (0.97 ± 0.01 g initial body weight) were distributed individually into glass aquaria with five alternative water volumes (100, 150, 200, 250, and 300 mL), comprising 15 fish per treatment (n = 15), over 8 weeks duration. No mortality of the reared fish was found during the study. Growth performance and feed utilization of the fish reared in 150 mL water were superior to the other treatments. The water volume significantly affected specific activities of the digestive enzymes (P ˂ 0.05), except for amylase, and no differences in enzyme activities were observed between fish reared in 150 and in 300 mL water. The preferred treatment maintained skin lightness (L*) and had the highest redness (a* and a*/b*) among the treatments. Protein synthesis (RNA concentration) and its turnover rate (RNA/protein ratio) and myosin and actin in muscle also benefited from this treatment. Carcass composition, in terms of moisture, crude protein, and crude ash, was maintained, but the amount of crude lipid fluctuated with water volume. Based on our experiments, the preferred minimal water volume for individual rearing of male Siamese fighting fish should be about 150 mL.

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