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Aim: Evaluation of the effectiveness of formulated Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) and Moringa oleifera booster on the growth performance of Heterobranchus bidorsalis.
Study Design: Data were subjected to statistical analysis using Duncan Multiple Range Statistics and interpretation was done using SPSS Version 22.
Place and Duration of Study: The experiment was conducted in the laboratory at the Department of Applied and Environmental Biology, Rivers State University, Nigeria for a period of 12 weeks (3 months), between November, 2016 – March, 2017.
Methodology: Total of 240 Heterobranchus bidorsalis fingerlings with an initial mean weight (1.61±0.23 g) and length (5.13±0.26 cm) were acclimated for one week. After acclimation, the fishes were fed twice daily (9am and 6pm) with 10% of their body weight after coating 2 ml/1 kg of the commercial feed with their individual growth booster syrup and allowed to air-dry for about 20 minutes. Heterobranchus bidorsalis fingerlings were scooped for the measurements exercise at one week interval after which they were returned to their various tanks.
Results: The result of this study recorded the experimental diets with optimum growth and survivability. From the result, it was deduced that, Commercial feed coated with watermelon syrup booster recorded the best performance in the growth variables of mean weight (26.36 ±3.19 g), mean length (13.61±1.35 cm), mean weight gain (24.64±3.00 g), mean length gain (8.38±1.35 cm), relative weight gain (25.36±3.19) while Commercial feed coated with commercial syrup booster (CbCf) recorded the best performance in growth variables of Daily Growth Rate (15.15±0.55) and Specific Growth Rate (2.69±0.03%) against Moring growth booster and commercial feed (control). However, there was less mortality as the fishes in different treatment tanks survived above 90%.
Conclusion: It could be summarized that Commercial feed coated with watermelon syrup booster (WbCf) had the best growth performance against the control groups although their values were not significantly impacted (p>0.05) when compared with other experimental diets.
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