Growth and Survival of Channel Catfish, Ictalurus punctatus, Fry Fed Diets with 36 or 45% Total Protein and All Plant or Animal Protein Sources Academic Article uri icon


  • The basic nutrient requirements for channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus, are well known, with anecdotal evidence suggesting that catfish fry grow faster and have better survival when fed an animal protein diet. However, the ability to grow channel catfish as small as 11 g on all plant diets and a lack of published data showing the superiority of fish or animal proteins compared to nutritionally equivalent plant proteins for catfish fry indicates that it may be possible to raise channel catfish fry on diets with only plant protein sources. Therefore, an experiment was conducted to compare the effects of 36 and 45% animal protein diets and 36 and 45% all plant protein diets on catfish fry growth and survival. Experimental diets were formulated to contain: 36% all plant protein (primarily from soybean meal); 36% animal and plant protein (≥45% of crude protein as fish meal); 45% all plant protein (primarily from soy protein concentrate and soybean meal); and 45% animal and plant protein (≥60% of crude protein as fish meal). The catfish were fed at a rate of 20% of body weight daily for 28 d using 24-h automated feeders. Mean ending weights and lengths of catfish fry were not significantly different (P > 0.05) for any treatment. Mean mortality was also not significantly different (P > 0.05) among diets. Regression analysis of growth rate and analysis of variance of final weights revealed that there was no significant difference in growth rate for any of the four diets. These results indicate that growth is not limited in channel catfish fry fed all plant protein diets, and that there is no apparent advantage to the inclusion of animal protein in diets for channel catfish fry. © Copyright by the World Aquaculture Society 2010.

author list (cited authors)

  • Sink, T. D., Lochmann, R. T., & Kinsey, N. R.

citation count

  • 7

publication date

  • February 2010