Raising larval fish

Peter Cattin p.cattin at auckland.ac.nz
Wed Jan 22 18:05:59 EST 2003

Dear Greg,

The problem of fry survival is one we experienced and dealt with a 
few years ago.  What happens is that the fry die if they aren't 
successful in making the transition from feeding endogenously on 
their yolk to feeding exogenously on artificial or live feed.  This 
period of high mortality occurs at day 14 in our temperature and 
water quality environment.  The timing is that precise you can set 
your watch by it.  

We found that it was necessary to substantially improve the 
prevailing systems of fry rearing which generally relied on placing 
the fry in water, usually static, perhaps with some methylene blue, 
and providing feed.  After a long period of trial and error, we 
developed and patented a fry rearing system we have call the 
MaxHatch Nursery.  The survival rate of the MaxHatch Nursery was 
over 60% in trials we conducted and was  

100% on several occasions. This was achieved rearing a range of  
fry including mutants and different strains.  

This hugely improved survival rate means that we se a wider range 
of phenotypes when conducting a screen.  It means that the 
"interesting" but numerically few variants that are typically the first 
to die have a much better chance of surviving.  The net effect of this 
is that you are able to achieve the desired results more quickly 
because you have not only have more material to look at but that 
material is more diverse.  

Please get back to me if you require further information.

Peter Cattin

Peter Cattin PhD
Department of Molecular Medicine & Pathology
Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences
The University of Auckland
Park Road, Grafton, Auckland.
Private Bag 92019, Auckland,
New Zealand

Tel: +64-9-373-7599 xtn. 86373 or 87719
Fax: +64-9-373-7492

Greg Dutton wrote:

> Hi everyone.  We've been having trouble recently with the survival
> of our larval fish.  They seem to do okay up to about 3 weeks, at
> which point they rapidly die, leaving only about 20%-30% survival.
> In some cases all of the fish die.  We've been feeing them twice a
> day with Argent artificial plankton and housing them in AHAB 2.75L
> tanks once they reach an age of 7 days.  Prior to that we keep them
> in E3 in petri dishes.  Does anyone have any suggestions about food
> and/or conditions that might help boost survival? Thanks very much,
> Greg Dutton
> Oregon Health Sciences University
> (503) 494-9483
> ---

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