Effects of dietary lipid and environmental salinity on growth, body composition, and cold tolerance of juvenile red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus). Academic Article uri icon


  • Simultaneous, 6-week feeding trials were conducted in which diets containing menhaden, corn, coconut and hydrogenated menhaden oil at 7.0%, plus a diet containing 14% menhaden oil, were fed to triplicate groups of juvenile red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus) at two different salinities (5 and 32%.). Weight gain was significantly (p < 0.05) affected by diet and salinity. Fish fed the diet containing 14% menhaden oil had the greatest weight gain; whereas, fish fed the diet containing coconut oil gained the least weight. Fish in brackish water had significantly greater weight gain than fish in full-strength seawater over the 6-week period, although fish fed coconut and saturated menhaden oil in brackish water had reduced survival. Dietary lipid also significantly affected muscle and liver total lipid, hepatosomatic index (HSI), and intraperitoneal fat (IPF) ratio, as fish fed the diets containing 14% menhaden oil had higher values for all of these body condition indices.After the feeding trial, fish were subjected to a chronic cold tolerance assay. In the chronic trial, where temperature was gradually reduced over a 3-week period, fish fed the diets containing menhaden oil had significantly lower median lethal temperatures (MLT) than those fish fed the diets containing coconut, corn and saturated menhaden oils. No significant effects of cold exposure were observed on muscle and liver total lipid. Cold exposure prompted a modification in lipid metabolism by lowering total saturated fatty acids and raising (n - 3) highly unsaturated fatty acids (HUFA) in the neutral lipid of liver. Fish with the lowest MLT in the chronic assay exhibited signs of conserving (n - 3) HUFA and depleting (n - 6) fatty acids [primarily 18:2 (n - 6)], resulting in higher (n - 3)/(n - 6) ratios in the polar lipid of liver. These data suggest that the lower lethal temperature of juvenile red drum can be reduced through dietary manipulation involving the inclusion of high levels of dietary lipid rich in (n - 3) HUFA.

published proceedings

  • Fish Physiol Biochem

author list (cited authors)

  • Craig, S. R., Neill, W. H., & Gatlin, D. M.

citation count

  • 70

complete list of authors

  • Craig, SR||Neill, WH||Gatlin, DM

publication date

  • February 1995