New published article: Assays for optimising the growth of Holothuria scabra juveniles during the nursery phase

Fidèle Rakotonjanahary1*, Thierry Lavitra1, Nicolas Fohy2 and Igor Eeckhaut3

  1. Institut Halieutique et des Sciences Marines, University of Toliara, Madagascar, PO Box 141, 601 Toliara, Madagascar
  2. 2  Madagascar Holothurie, Route du port, Mahavatsy 2, 601 Toliara, Madagascar
  3. 3  Marine Organisms Biology and Biomimetics, University of Mons, Belgium

* Author for correspondence:



Fidèle Rakotonjanahary1*, Thierry Lavitra1, Nicolas Fohy2 and Igor Eeckhaut3

The effect of sediment quality on the survival and growth of the sea cucumber Holothuria scabra reared in nursery ponds was previously studied by our team. Here, we tested the effects of three types of enrichment to optimise the growth of sea cucumbers in nursery ponds. The enrichments were: 1) marine sediment + provender based on fisheries byproducts; 2) marine sediment + green water, including tropical local dia- toms; and 3) marine sediment + tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) in co-culture. For this experimentation, eight outdoor ponds, each measuring 32 m2, were used. The rearing density at the beginning of the experiment was 20 ind. m-2 (640 H. scabra juveniles in each pond). The results showed that at the end of the experi- ment, no significant differences could be detected between the survival rates, mean weights or biomasses obtained for each type of enrichment tested. However, marine sediment collected from a mangrove zone (control) and marine sediment + tilapia in co-culture produced good performance after seven weeks of rear- ing. The profitability of co-culture with tilapia should be further investigated.

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