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Evaluation of visual traits of food on ingestion and growth in the Nile Tilapia: the effects of chow brightness

Grant number: 15/22816-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): February 01, 2016
Effective date (End): January 31, 2017
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Fishery Resources and Fishery Engineering - Aquaculture
Principal researcher:Rodrigo Egydio Barreto
Grantee:Thainan Souza Germano de Oliveira
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IBB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil


Many factors can affect the growth of fish, and one of the main factor is related to food intake. In the case of a fishery, feed conversion, and consequently the fish growth is directly related with feeding. The cultivation of some species, especially carnivorous fish, eating has been considered a major obstacle, being necessary to investigate elements that stimulate feeding motivation. This project has the general objective of evaluating the effects of visual attributes of the chow in feeding behavior, feed conversion and growth in fish. The attribute to be modulated is the brightness of the feed. This trait was chosen because predator fish use various visual stimuli of their prey to locate them and subdue them. In this case, the brightness of the feed would be something that would resemble the reflection of light in the epidermis of a prey fish which have metallic pigment (p. ex. inside iridophores). In comparitive approach, a diet-generalist fish (omnivores), which also feed on fish can likewise be motivated to eat by the presence of this attribute. Such hypotheses are plausible to be recommended for the application of the elements of the predator-prey systems in aquaculture, in the case of the efficiency of such feeding stimulant work. An increased motivation to eat and food intake can provide increased growth and utilization of food provided to the fish can be reduced, thus lowering production costs. This project will evaluate this hypothesis within the logic of a fish species with a generalist diet, in this case, the Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus. (AU)

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