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Creating a dream breed
Date:3/4/2010

ped ideal diets for fish. "For us the project was about increasing our knowledge about a new species of fish for aquaculture," says Fernando Sanz, Nutreco's coordinator on the project and the firm's commercial manager in Spain. Nutreco's nutritionists set out to design a diet for the blackspot seabream. For months they monitored a variety of foods, using colour markers so they could track how they were digested in the fish. They carried out their practical experiments in A Corua and Nutreco experts analysed the effect various foods had on the fish's development at their laboratory in Burgos, northern Spain.

Painstaking process

"It is a slow process," says Sanz. "But we developed a commercial diet which helps them grow quicker in less time. In the sea, they take years to grow, maybe five years and with our diet and the method we developed they grow in half the time." Sanz's team called the food they developed Besugo Power, since it gives the blackspot seabream a high energy diet, and they are now selling it commercially.

For blackspot bream to flourish at the A Corua farm, however, the partnership had to focus on more than just what they ate. Blackspot are very fragile fish and can be easily stressed in captivity, which leads them to die suddenly. As a deep-water species, they are used to living at depths of 150-300 metres in dark, stable, cold temperatures. Feeding and caring for the fish on the farm from the larval stage to hatching and then rearing the young fish - known as fry - until they reached market size of 500g had to take account of the changes in water temperature during the season, waves and predators such as birds and dolphins which are present on the farm but not in the blackspot bream's deep-sea natural habitat.

Normally fish farms can buy fry from a specialist producer and then rear the fish to market size but there are no blackspot seabream juvenile producers so Luso-Hispana's participation in the project
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Contact: Piotr Pogorzelski
piotr.pogorzelski@es.eureka.be
322-777-0979
EUREKA
Source:Eurekalert

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