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Table 72. Natural food types in ponds and their characteristics



Filamentous algae



benthic community of cyanobacteria, diatoms, and associated invertebrates

mostly of species of Chaetomorpha, and also of Cladophora and Enteromorpha

consists of numerous species of microscopic diatoms, algae, and zooplankton

Preferred environment

shallow water, high salinity, intense sunlight; requires clayey or loamy bottom with at least 4% organic matter

low salinity (usually during the rainy months) in shallow to moderately deep ponds; grows on wide variety of soil types

high or low salinity, in shallow or deep ponds; difficult to establish in calcareous/alkaline soils

Growing period

2-6 weeks

2-3 weeks

1-2 weeks

Advantages in propagating

produces high and consistent yields for milkfish (up to 550 kg/ha net biomass yield)

can be propagated with planting material from other ponds; does not require manure application; fish taste and texture reportedly better

produces highest yield for tilapia especially when combined with manuring; can be seeded from other ponds

Concerns and limitations in propagating

may require 30-40 days to grow; rain kills floating mats causing them to sink, rot, and pollute the water; strong wind also forces floating mats to the pond bank

biomass yield generally low; undesirable fibrous species may dominate under high salinity; too thick growth consumes space and can trap small fish

yields unreliable in milkfish ponds; blooms can collapse resulting in fish kills; species causing off-flavor may dominate especially in fresh water

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