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Stomach Length and Food Preference of three Tilapia species (Osteichthyes: Cichlidae in Agulu Lake Basin, Nigeria



A comparative study of the stomach length and food contents of Tilapia mariae (Boulenger), T. zillii (Garvais) and Oreochromis niloticus (Linneus) was carried out over a 24 month period in Agulu Lake basin, southeastern Nigeria. Results showed that T . zillii was herbivorous while T . mariae and O. niloticus subsisted mainly on a wide variety of plankton. Generally, considerable quantities of zoo – and phyto-plankton were present in the food of the three species. Variations were observed in the gut lengths and dental anatomy of the tilapias which related to their food preferences. Nutritive value of food showed no significant difference (P < 0.05) in all species and crude protein evaluation showed that stomach contents were adequate.

Journal of Aquatic Sciences Volume 16, April 2001, pp. 57-60


Stomach length, Tooth structure, Food habits, Tilapia.

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eISSN: 0189-8779