Earthworm and maggots meals as potential fishmeal replacement
Three meals were formulated from the earthworm (Endrilus eugineae) and maggot (Musca domestica) and fish (Engraulis encrosicolus). These meals were evaluated as a potential replacement for fishmeal. This is because fishmeal could be very expensive at times. The three meals were used in feeding the catfish (Heterobranchus isopterus) fry for 30 days. The study was conducted in 1991 at the Institute of Renewable Natural Resources Farm, University of Science and Technology. Two replicates were done using four hapas in each replicate. Each hapa was stocked with 50 fry and fed. Those in the fourth hapa were not fed to ascertain the effect of supplementary feeding on the growth of the fish. Weight increment was found to be less in the fourth hapa than the other three hapas, though the difference was not significant at the 5% level. On the basis of weight increment, the best growth performance was produced by maggot meal. It was followed by earthworm and fish meals respectively. Based on food conversion ratio maggot meal was again the best, followed by earthworm and fish meals respectively. The importance of supplementary feeding was evidenced in the higher weight increment in fish that were fed than those that were not fed. Maggot and earthworm meals could therefore be a whole or partial replacement for fishmeal. The difficulty in the harvesting or rearing maggots and earthworms may however reduce this potential.
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