Improving biomass gain using crossbreeding of distinct farmed population of African catfish Clarias gariepinus

Improving biomass gain using crossbreeding of distinct farmed population of African catfish Clarias gariepinus

Ade Sunarma, Odang Carman, Muhammad Zairin Jr., Alimuddin

Department of Aquaculture, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Science, Bogor Agricultural University, Dramaga Campus, Bogor 16680, West Java, Indonesia;
National Freshwater Aquaculture Center, Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, Republic of Indonesia. Jalan Selabintana 37, Sukabumi 43114, Indonesia. Corresponding author:

African catfish, Clarias gariepinus was introduced to Indonesia, firstly in 1985 and subsequently in 2002, 2005 and 2011, both as farmed and wild population. However, limited number of early parental and uncontrolled broodstock utilization led to deterioration of production performance. One possible method that can produce immediate improvement is crossbreeding between distinct introduced populations. The present study examined the performance and heterosis of crossbreeding of farmed African catfish. Three populations (the Indonesia, Netherlands and Thailand populations) were reciprocally crossbred to form three purebred and six crossbreed populations. Body weight, survival, biomass, feed conversion and growth rate were calculated at the nursing stage (81 days after hatching) and the grow-out stage (172 days after hatching). At the grow-out stage, the Netherlands female x Thailand male (NT) population achieved the highest biomass (22.59 kg) and body weight (241.39 g) and had a higher survival rate (93.67%). The NT population obtained the highest mid-parent heterosis on survival (19.71%) and biomass (52.31%) and the highest best-parent heterosis on biomass (25.34%) at the grow-out stage. These results emphasized the preference of the crossbreeding between separated population for enhancing of the production performance. Further studies and implication of our result to Clarias production in Indonesia are proposed.

AACL Bioflux 2017 10(5):1001-1010

Nursing Stage of African Catfish Hybrid in Outdoor Plastic-Based Pond

Ade Sunarma*, Sarifin, Maskur, Abduh Nurhidajat Main Center for Freshwater Aquaculture Development, Jl. Selabintana 37 Sukabumi 43114 Indonesia email:

African catfish production has been remarkable increase in Indonesia by 40 pct/year in past 5 years. In nursing stage, this production mostly conducted in plastic-based pond in a backyard hatchery system. As an effort to provide good quality of seed, crossbreed among different introduced-history of African catfish has been conducted, i.e. Sangkuriang population (SK), Thailand population (TH) and Egypt population (EG). Since first introduction to Indonesia in 1985 from Taiwan, African catfish has been improved using back-cross strategy and resulted a new variety, locally known as Sangkuriang catfish, in 2004. Others population introduced from Thailand and Egypt in 2003 and 2007, respectively.

The crossbreeding were performed by artificial breeding. Fertilized eggs was incubated in happa in flow-through water. Larvae (4 days after hatching) were transferred to nursing stages in outdoor plastic-based pond (18 m2 and 40-50 cm in depth) with stocking density 1.000 fish/m2 for 21 days. The larvae were fed with live tubificid worm at 1st week, live worm and artificial diet mix at 2nd week, and artificial diet at 3rd week. At the end of rearing, the seeds separated by length size.

Supporting to requirement broodfish for field utilization, this research conducted in outdoor plastic-based pond. SK population has adapted to the system but others kept in hatchery. However, results showed all population and hybrids can be adapted to outdoor pond. Survival rate (18-37%) tend similar to reported in other research in more controlled system (e.g. 7-40% Adamek et al., 2011). There’re no different in growth but varied in heterosis. Wachirachaikarn et al., (2009) reported negative heterosis in African catfish in Thailand. Length distribution varied among populations. In nursing stage, more uniformity in length can increase survival in further rearing due to suppress cannibalism. However, further research until fish consumable size required.

Performance of African Catfish Hybrid Reared in Outdoor Plastic based-Pond

Performance of African Catfish Hybrid Reared in Outdoor Plastic based-Pond

Asian-Pacific Aquaculture 2013 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam 10-13 December 2013

Aquaculture Adaptive Technology: Outdoor Plastic-Based Pond for African Catfish Production in Small Scale Fish Farmer

Ade Sunarma*, Kesit Tisnawibowo, Abduh Nurhidajat, Sarifin
Main Center for Freshwater Aquaculture Development,
Jl. Selabintana 37 Sukabumi 43114 Indonesia email:

As an introduced species in Indonesia aquaculture, African catfish (Clarias gariepinus) has been cultured widespread along the country. After introduced in 1985-1986, fish farmer replaced local catfish (Clarias batrachus) and began to more seriously effort to use a special hatchery and pond for African catfish. However, since 2000s, along with the increasing of fish farmer skill and culture technique availability, African catfish nursery and grow out mostly used outdoor pond-based plastic. These changes impacted on remarkably increased of African catfish production, from 91mt in 2007 to 337mt in 2011 or 40 pct./yr.

Fish farmer more preferable to culture of African catfish in outdoor pond-based plastic correlated to several comparative advantage, such as:
– Using outdoor plastic-based pond, African catfish could be cultured utilize limited land and water resources. Nursery pond just 12-20 m2/pond (50 cm in water depth) and grow out pond 20-40 m2/pond (70-100 cm in depth). No or limited water replaced along rearing period.
– There were no hatchery building or water treatment needed. So, investment cost were very cheap, i.e. about USD 30-40 and USD 50-70 for nursery pond and grow out pond construction, respectively.
– Easy cultivate technology for fish farmer. African catfish spawned naturally instead artificially and reared in stagnant water instead recirculation system or flow-through.
– Culture period were very short. In nursery stage, fish farmer can sell juvenile fish (8-9 cm in length) after 3 months. In grow out, consumable fish can be reached after 3 months.
– Productivity in nursery and grow out can be reached 37.5 million juvenile/ha/year and 1600 ton/ha/year, respectively.
– African catfish delivered mostly as fresh product and relatively small fish to the market. In Jakarta, the capital city, filled at least 170 ton/day of African catfish 8-10 fish/kg in size as consumable fish.

This success story is the best example of aquaculture development in Indonesia, at least by two reasons, i.e. based on small scale fish farmer instead private company and shorter period from adoption to mass application of fish culture technique than other fish cultured. Then, this successful also showed a different culture system of African catfish compare to available published technique (e.g. de Graaf & Janssen, 1996; Potongkam & Miller, 2006; Fleuren, 2008; Isyagi, et al., 2009).

World Aquaculture 2014 Adelaide, South Australia, 7 – 11 June 2014