Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
Conadal production was studied in Loxechinus albus (Molina, 1782) maintained in cages suspended from a long-line in the Estero Castro, Chiloé for 3 mo during the austral summer. The sea urchins were fed either an artificial diet or a natural diet consisting of the macroalgae Macrocystis pyrifera and Ulva sp. Both diets were tested for four size ranges: 40–45, 50–55, 60–65 and 70–75 mm diameter. For all four size ranges, highest gonad production was with the artificial diet. Gonad production was greatest in the 40–45 mm individuals with an increase of about 1,400% and 750% in the wet weight of gonads in individuals fed the artificial and natural diet, respectively. With the three other size ranges, the increase was nearly 100% with the artificial diet and nearly 0% with the natural diet The gonad index showed similar patterns, being highest in the smallest individuals. Small individuals fed the artificial diet would provide the most cost effective aquaculture as production is best. It is not necessary to grow L. albus to the minimal legal size for fisheries (70-mm diameter) for cost effective gonad production.
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