Digestive enzymatic activity on Tropical gar (Atractosteus tropicus) larvae fed different diets

Carlos Aguilera, Roberto Mendoza, Israel Iracheta, Gabriel Marquez

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11 Scopus citations


Digestive enzymatic activity and growth performance on tropical gar (Atractosteustropicus) larvae fed Artemia nauplii (LF), frozen adult Artemia (AB), an artificial diet (AF) with 46% protein and 16% lipids and a starvation group (SG) from first feeding (5 days after hatching-5 DAH) to 34 DAH were studied. All larvae under starvation (SG) died at 15 DAH. By the end of the experimental period, morphological variables (total length, wet weight and specific growth rate) were significant in larvae fed AF compared to LF and AB. All enzymes studied in the experiment were present since the start of exogenous feeding (including pepsin) and the enzymatic activity varied with the diets. Low levels of enzymatic activity were observed until the 29 DAH; however, after this moment, there was a significant increase (eightfold), particularly for the AF treatment. In vitro protein digestibility tests performed with enzymatic extracts showed that artificial diets with 52% protein and 14% lipids were better digested by larvae before 30 DAH, while diets with 45% protein and 11% lipids were better digested after this age. Taking into account the better growth performance, higher enzymatic activity and better protein digestibility obtained, artificial diets can be used since the start of exogenous feeding on tropical gar larvae, as in other lepisosteids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)679-691
Number of pages13
JournalFish Physiology and Biochemistry
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Artificial diets
  • Atractosteus tropicus
  • Digestive enzymes
  • Protein digestibility
  • Tropical gar


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