Biofloc can replace fishmeal in red tilapia diets

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By Milthon Lujan

Diseno experimental biofloc tilapia 1

One study concludes that biofloc can replace up to 33% of fishmeal in red tilapia diets, without impairing growth.

Researchers from King Faisal University and Fayoum University studied feed utilization, growth performance, fish morphology, fish chemical composition, and blood profiles of red tilapia-fed meal-replacement diets. of fish with biofloc in percentages of 33, 66, and 100%.

Biofloc as input for aquaculture diets

The biofloc is a conglomeration of living and dead particulate organic matter, phytoplankton, bacteria, and bacterial predators.

Biofloc has been used as a replacement for fishmeal in several studies, and studies have reported that biofloc aids the growth of marine shrimp species.

Likewise, the biofloc was used to feed fish species due to its quality protein content, growth stimulants, and prebiotic content, which stimulate digestive enzymes and improve health status.

Main results of the study

“The results indicate that the higher the biofloc level in the diet of the fish, the lower the feed efficiency and growth performance, morphological and chemical body characteristics, and blood profiles,” they report.

The group of red tilapia fed with biofloc (33%) had similar results in protein and energy values when compared to the control group; while the diets containing 66 and 100% biofloc registered the worst results.

On the other hand, the study reports that the diets with biofloc gave similar results to the control diet in morphological characters related to the total length, depth, and thickness of the body.

“Similar results were obtained in dry matter, protein, ash, and energy values between the biofloc and control groups, while the 100% biofloc diet gave the highest fat values,” they reported.

On the other hand, the results of the study reveal that the biofloc diets (66 and 100%) caused a change in terms of redness and yellowness of minced meats.

“In this study, a significant improvement in fish meat color was obtained in the 66% and 100% biofloc diets, compared to the control and 33% biofloc diets,” the researchers note.


“The inclusion of biofloc in the diet of red tilapia fingerlings could hold promise in terms of feed efficiency and growth performance, body chemical composition at a level of 33%, or lower, due to the adverse effects of the highest levels,” the researchers concluded.

The study was funded by the Deanship of Scientific Research, Vice Presidency for Graduate Studies and Scientific Research, King Faisal University, Saudi Arabia.

Reference (free access)
Abdelwahab AM, Almadani A, Almehsen I (2023). Effects of replacement fishmeal with biofloc on feed utilization and growth performance, morphological and chemical characteristics of red tilapia. Adv. Anim. vet. Sci. 11(2):272-277. DOI | https://dx.doi.org/10.17582/journal.aavs/2023/

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