Potentials of fresh housefly maggot in the diet of Oreochromis niloticus fingerlings
The study was designed to investigate the value of fresh housefly maggot diet as protein source and the level of inclusion for optimum growth in the diet of Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) fingerlings. Five experimental diets, four fresh maggot substituted diets containing 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% fresh maggot meal and a control (0% maggot inclusion) were prepared and tested on triplicate groups of O. niloticus fingerlings (mean weight of 0.52g) for twelve weeks. The fish were fed twice daily at 3% of their body weight. The optimum water quality parameters were 270C, 7.63 and 7.55 for Temperature, pH and Dissolved Oxygen respectively and the maggot did not pollute the water media. The best growth rate was recorded among the fish fed control diet and 100% fresh maggot inclusion as the only protein source and the least growth rate was showed by fingerlings fed 25% fresh maggot inclusion. Optimum Specific Growth Rate, Feed Conversion Ratio and Protein Efficiency Ratio of 1.8702, 159.92 and 1.8759 respectively showed that there was no significant difference in weight gained by the fish fed with the five diets except 25% fresh maggot substituted diet. The study indicated that fresh maggot meal can be successfully used to replace fishmeal partially or completely from 50% up to 100% in the diet of O. niloticus fingerlings for optimal growth and nutrient utilization. Based on these results, maggot meal is suggested as an effective and sustainable protein source to replace fishmeal in the diet of farmed tilapia.
Keywords: Fishmeal, Housefly maggot, Optimum growth, Diet