Aquat. Living Resour.
Volume 36, 2023
|Number of page(s)||8|
|Published online||14 March 2023|
First steps towards mass rearing of European smelt (Osmerus eperlanus, L.) using conventional hatchery equipment
Thünen Institute of Fisheries Ecology, Herwigstraße 31, 27572 Bremerhaven, Germany
2 Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Faculty of Natural Sciences III, Karl-Freiherr-von-Fritsch-Str. 2, 06120 Halle (Saale), Germany
* Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Handling Editor: Pierre Boudry
Accepted: 13 February 2023
Anadromous European smelt (Osmerus eperlanus) is a keystone species in lake and river ecosystems. In the past and present, stock declines in several of its habitats have been reported. The reasons for this are unclear. Experimental research on the early life stages could help to reveal the potential causes. For this purpose, knowledge on artificial propagation and rearing of early life stages is needed. Following from previous work, we show how to scale up and mass rear European smelt using conventional hatchery equipment and present a simplified protocol for first feeding. Smelt eggs, after egg adhesiveness is removed, can be incubated in standard hatchery equipment commonly used in aquaculture. Incubation in McDonald-type jars shows even improved results when settling of floating eggs is prevented. Next to avoiding egg loss this simultaneously reduces labor for daily care. First feeding of larval smelt can be achieved with decapsulated artemia cysts, eliminating the need for the labor-intensive green water production. Using the protocol presented, larvae of different stages can be produced in large quantities allowing further experimental studies.
Key words: Delta smelt / Elbe river / first feeding / fish larvae / forage fish / Osmeriformes
© S. Reiser et al., Published by EDP Sciences 2023
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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