Dietary Supplementation with Chromium DL-Methionine Enhances Growth Performance of African Catfish (Clarias gariepinus)
Sustainable aqua feeds have become an urgent necessity for future-oriented aquaculture sector development, and especially mineral supply could be limited when diets are being prepared with low amounts of animal-based sources. Since knowledge about the efficiency of organic trace mineral supplementation in different species of fish is limited, the effects of chromium DL-methionine in African catfish nutrition were evaluated. Four commercially based diets with increasing chromium DL-methionine supplementation (0, 0.2, 0.4, and 0.6 mg Cr kg-1) in the form of Availa-Cr 1000 were fed to African catfish (Clarias gariepinus B., 1822) in quadruplicate groups for 84 days. Growth performance parameters (final body weight, feed conversion ratio, specific growth rate, daily feed intake, protein efficiency ratio, and protein retention efficiency), biometric indices (mortality, hepatosomatic index, spleen somatic index, and hematocrit), and mineral retention efficiency were assessed at the end of the feeding trial. The specific growth rate was significantly increased in fish-fed diets with 0.2 mg Cr kg-1 and 0.4 mg Cr kg-1 supplementation in comparison with control and based on the second-degree polynomial regression analysis; supplementation with 0.33 mg Cr kg-1 was optimal in commercially based diets for African catfish. Chromium retention efficiency was reduced with increasing supplementation levels; however, the chromium content of the whole body was comparable to literature. The results suggest that organic chromium supplementation is a viable and safe supplement for diets to increase the growth performance of African catfish.