AUSTRALIA - A new feeding strategy for yellowtail kingfish has delivered rapid results and the potential for a $2 million boost for the state's industry.
Clean Seas - Australia's largest commercial kingfish farming company - has adopted the strategy on its farms off Eyre Peninsula.
The research showed kingfish which were fed until they were full once a day for six days a week were able to convert food faster to put on weight, compared to fish fed smaller amounts.
The research is part of the $6 million, three year Kingfish for Profit project, which aims to develop cost effective, sustainable feeds and feeding strategies.
The research has been led by the State Government through the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI).
The project is supported by a range of stakeholders including the Fisheries and Research Development Corporation, the NSW Department of Primary Industries, the Australian Seafood CRC and two aquafeed companies.
"Our previously used winter feed management strategy would have seen our farmed yellowtail kingfish lose a significant amount of weight, resulting in a loss in profit. But now our yellowtail kingfish put on weight, which when taking feed into account results in a profit of approximately $2 million on a 2,000 tonne operation over a full winter period," said Clean Seas' Development Manager, Dr Trent D'Antignana.
SARDI's Associate Professor, David Stone, added: "The three month trial evaluated seven different feeding rates, from only 0.1 per cent of the body weight of pellets one day per week to feeding to the fish were full for six days per week."
"There was a need to conduct research into farm feeding practices during lower winter water temperatures and look at ways to improve the food conversion ratio and reduce food wastage while maintaining healthy fish and optimising production."
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