An Exploratory Attempt To Rear Largemouth Black Bass Fingerlings In A Controlled Environment

An experiment on the rearing of largemouth black bass fingerlings in troughs is described. Negative results were obtained in inducing 1/2, and 3/4-inch fry to feed on a diet of ground fish. Sizes of 1 1/2, 2 and 3-inch fish accepted this form of food after a training period of 3-5 days. Bass fingerlings were successfully reared from a size of 1 1/2 inches to one of 3 inches on a diet of ground fish over a period of 116 days. Growth was slow, but the average weight of the fish increased from 417 milligrams at the start of the period to one of 4.2 grams at the end, a tenfold increase. Mortality was high for the first four weeks of the feeding period but later was reduced to an insignificant level as the fish learned to feed and diseases were controlled. Although the number of fish reared was small, the experiment indicates that this species can be reared under artificial conditions. Rearing techniques employed would have to be improved considerably to make the procedure economically feasible.

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