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Preliminary observations on the tank and pond culture of the glass eels of the Australian shortfin eel, Anguilla Australis Richardson
journal contributionposted on 2001-10-01, 00:00 authored by B Ingram, G Gooley, S De Silva, B Larkin, Bob Collins
There is expanding interest in the culture of the Australian shortfin eel Anguilla australis Richardson; however, there is a lack of fundamental biology and husbandry information necessary to further develop an industry within Australia. The present study was undertaken to gain a preliminary understanding of basic husbandry requirements for rearing of juvenile A. australis (glass eels and elvers) in tanks and earthen ponds. Newly caught glass eels were successfully acclimated to culture conditions. During tank culture trials, specific growth rates (SGR) and survival rates ranged from −2.1 to 2.8% day−1 and 52% to 100% respectively. Glass eels weaned onto a commercial eel diet exhibited a significantly greater SGR and survival rate than those weaned onto a commercial trout diet. Glass eels weaned onto an eel diet over a 15-day period grew slightly faster than eels weaned over a 5-day period, but survival rates were not significantly different for each treatment. SGRs (up to 2.8% day−1) were significantly higher for glass eels fed at 9 and 12% day−1 than at 6% day−1. Stocking densities between 2.5 kg m−3 and 30 kg m−3 did not influence either SGR or survival rates. SGRs were significantly higher for glass eels cultured at 25 °C than at lower temperatures. During pond culture trials, SGRs and survival rates ranged from 1.36 to 1.65% day−1 and 39% to 77% respectively. The SGR and survival rates of juvenile eels stocked into ponds receiving supplementary feeding with a commercial eel diet were not significantly different to those of eels stocked into ponds that did not receive supplementary feeding.