Magnesium requirement of fingerling channel catfish and signs of magnesium deficiency.
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Purified casein diets with and without supplemental magnesium were fed to fingerling channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) in order to establish the essentially of this mineral. Fish fed the basal diet containing 0.004% magnesium developed deficiency signs such as poor growth, anorexia, sluggishness, muscle flaccidity and high mortality. After 3 weeks, two groups of fish fed the basal diet were converted to the supplemental diet containing 0.057% magnesium. Deficiency signs in these fish were alleviated almost immediately. In a second experiment, graded levels of magnesium sulfate were added to casein-based diets and fed to channel catfish fingerlings to determine their dietary requirement for magnesium. Results indicated that a minimum magnesium level of 0.04% of the dry diet was required to maintain normal growth, serum and bone magnesium levels in channel catfish fingerlings.