Alternate Day Feeding: An Effective Strategy for Producing Brook Trout Stockers

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Stowell, Stephen G.
Foster, John R., Dr.
Lehman, Brent C.
The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility of producing stocker size (8.5-12") Brook Trout while utilizing an alternate day feeding schedule. This experiment was conducted at the cold-water hatchery on the State University of New York's Cobleskill campus. One tank was fed daily (am/pm), while the other tank was fed every other day (am/pm). Alternate day fed fish received half as much feed. Environmental parameters of dissolved oxygen and temperature were measured each day and nitrate and ammonia were measured weekly. Mass and length of thirty randomly selected fish from each tank were recorded to determine feed conversion, condition and growth. Alternate day feeding substantially improved water quality, reducing the frequency in which filters had to be cleaned. Trout following the alternative day feed schedule fed more vigorously and wasted less feed, leading to a superior feed conversion ratio.