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Importance of Pelletizing your own Fish Feed

It is not only cost effective to be pelletizing your own fish feed, it is also safer because then you will be sure and ascertain the quality of the raw materials you are using to produce your fish feeds. You will be in control of all that happens to the feed you are serving your fishes.

All you need to do is to purchase a pelletizing machine that can be used in making the feed for your fishes and it may not so much expensive as they vary in sizes so all you need to do is purchase the size you can afford and start your feed production.

Catfishes are a diverse group of ray-fines fish which include Corydoras, Synodontis, Bagrid,Dora, Botia, Dianema, Pimelodus, Brochis. They get their name from their prominent barbels which resemble a cat’s whiskers. Catfish range in size and behavior from the heaviest and longest.

As catfish are of considerable commercial importance, many of the larger species are farmed or fished for food. So what kind of feed catfish is fed is vital to the people’s health.

Catfish feed pellets made by catfish feed pellet making machine are extruded catfish food with many benefits for the growth of catfish, and thus they have been the first choice for catfish feeding.

Benefits of Catfish Feed Pellets for Catfish Feeding

Catfish feed pellets are a kind of fish feeds which is made by fish feed extruder for catfish in a pelleted form. It contains major components like water, protein, lipid, carbohydrate, minerals and vitamins. For different kinds of fish, there are different formulation depending fish kinds, growth cycle, and development stage.

Energy and essential nutrients are needed for fish for their maintenance, movement, normal metabolic functions and growth. Fish requires feeds varying in fish quantity and quality according to their size, growth period, digestive anatomy. As fish is a kind of poikilotherm, the feed requirements changes with their body temperature, environmental variations.

The catfish feed pellets are in scientific formula for the good of catfish weigh gaining and growth. As research shows, if catfish receive too much energy compared with protein, it will stop eating before they consume enough protein for maximum growth. It will lead to high body fat, low dress out yield and poor shelf life of catfish if it eat too much energy from dietary fat or carbohydrate.

However, catfish feed pellets made from optimum ratio of energy, protein, minerals and other nutrition, are suitable for all kinds of catfish and can meet the nutrition requirements for growth.

Importance of Pelletizing your own Fish Feed

Features of Catfish Feed Pellets

• Unique soft pellet formulation• Natural ingredients
• Less waste – improved water quality• Sustainably sourced ingredients

Read Also: Reasons why Feeding your Fishes is very Important

Why Catfish Farmers Prefer to Make Own Fish Feed Pellets?

● Lots of cheap raw materials for making catfish feed pellets are available locally.
● Catfish farmers can choose the ingredients of homemade catfish feed pellets based on their own need.
● Affordable user-friendly fish feed pellet making machine is available and the fish feed machine supplier can offer the detailed catfish feed pellet making guide.

How to Make Fish Feed Pellets?

● Material selection: soybean meal, cottonseed meal, corn grain, wheat middlings, fish derivatives, derivatives of vegetable origin, algea, oils ad fats, minerals, protein
● Crushing: use feed hammer mill to crush raw materials.
● Mixing: use grain power mixer which has a U-type tank with dual shafts and paddles to mix the crushed materials well as the mixing has a relation with the daily intake. Mix vitamins and minerals with small mount, and then add oil in to the ingredients. Add water and mix well to form a mash.
● Extruding: pass the feed mixture through a fish feed pellet extruder. Set up the suitable diameter for the die, and during the extrusion the pellets are cut off or broken into smaller lengths.
● Pellets Drying: use belt type feed pellet dryer to dry the pellets. The moist pellets should be dried at low temperature and with good airflow to dry the pellets to a water content of 10% or less. The temperature should be less than 60ºC to protect vitamin from destroyed.
● Fish Feed Pellets Packing: use feed pellet packing machine to pack feed pellets into bags or containers that can be stored against insects, rats and to keep out moisture. When packing fish feed pellets, please avoid using plastic bags as feed can sweat.

Read Also: Reasons why Fishes Refuse to Eat their Feed and How to Correct it

Feed ingredients

No one feed ingredient can supply all of the nutrients and energy catfish need for best growth. Commercial catfish feeds contain a mixture of feedstuffs and vitamin and mineral premixes that provide the right essential nutrients as well as the energy necessary to use the nutrients.

The amount of each feed ingredient depends on several factors, including nutrient requirements, ingredient cost, availability of each ingredient, and processing characteristics.

Protein and energy supplements

Feedstuffs containing 20 percent crude protein or more are considered protein supplements. Protein supplements may be classified as animal or plant proteins. Animal proteins used in animal feeds come from inedible tissues from meat packing or rendering plants, milk products, and marine sources. Those used in catfish feed include marine fish meals, catfish offal meal, meat and bone/blood meal, and poultry byproduct meal.

Animal proteins are generally considered to be higher quality than plant proteins. Animal protein is essential in the diet of fry and small fingerling catfish. Fish meal prepared from whole fish appears to be a better protein supplement than other animal proteins.

But fish meal does not appear to be essential in the diet of catfish after they reach a size of 6 to 7 inches. Animal proteins can be replaced by plant proteins in catfish food fish feeds without affecting growth and feed efficiency.

The main plant protein sources used in catfish feeds are oilseed meals, such as soybean meal, cottonseed meal, and peanut meal. Some other oilseed meals could be used but are not generally available on a timely basis and at an economical cost per unit of protein. Abrief description of various animal and plant protein sources that can be used in catfish feeds is given in the chart on the next page.

Energy supplements are feedstuffs that contain less than 20 percent crude protein. The include grain and grain byproducts and animal fat or vegetable oil. It is important to include nonprotein energy sources in catfish diets because they are the most economical source of energy, and they prevent dietary protein from being used for energy. Energy sources typically used in commercial catfish feeds include corn, corn screenings, wheat grain, wheat middlings, rice bran, milo, animal fat, and fish oil.

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Premixes

Vitamin and mineral premixes are generally added to catfish feeds. They provide more vitamins and minerals than what is needed for growth to make up for any losses that may occur during feed manufacture or storage. They are made from high quality ingredients, using forms of vitamins and minerals catfish can readily digest.

Feed formulation

Catfish feeds have generally been based on a fixed formula with little use of a least-cost approach as is used in other animal industries. To use a least-cost computer program to formulate feeds, manufacturers must know the cost of feed ingredients, the nutrient concentrations in feedstuffs, nutrient requirements and nutrient availability from feedstuffs, and nutritional and nonnutritional restrictions.

Use of least-cost feed formulation is limited because we dont know much about the nutrient levels that bring maximum profit in relation to levels that result in best weight gain, we cant store large number of different ingredients at the feed mills, and getting a wide assortment of feedstuffs on a timely basis is a problem.

But we can use a simple application of least-cost feed formulation used to formulate catfish feeds. Here are some examples of restrictions placed on nutrients and feed ingredients for least-cost formulation of catfish feeds.

Feed manufacturing

Feed manufacturing puts mixtures of feedstuffs and feed additives into a usable form. The main goal in making feedstuffs is to increase profits of animal production by increasing the nutritional value of the feedstuff or a mixture of feedstuffs.

Depending on the animal species, this process may range from a simple reduction of particle size to forming feed pellets through steam pelleting or extrusion. Catfish feeds are unique compared to feeds used for terrestrial animals grown for food because catfish feeds must be pelleted, water stable, and generally made to float on the water surface.

Thus most commercial catfish feeds are manufactured by extrusion. If a particular feed additive will not withstand extrusion, the feed may be manufactured by steam pelleting into a sinking pellet. Fat is typically sprayed on the feed pellets before shiping to reduce feed dust (fines).

Catfish feeds

Catfish feeds provide all the nutrients catfish need in a highly digestible form. Several feedmills manufacture catfish feeds. Commercial catfish feeds are similar in composition, are of high quality, and provide for rapid, efficient growth. Following are some examples.

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Source: University of Minnesota AgEcon – July 2006

Tips for Catfish Feeding

Catfish feeding must be fed 100% nutrition. As scientific research shows, catfish does not grow significantly better when the protein containing is not suitable for catfish needed. As different catfish in different periods need different nutrition because fingerling and juvenile catfish are grow much faster than larger fish.

The quantity of feeds is needed differently with the size of catfish. Too much feeds can result waste and the pollution of water and affect the growing of cat fish. The following is a list of feeds for different size catfish.

Fish Size (lbs/1000 fish)FCRDaily Percent BW
601.14.5
1001.33.75
6001.72.5
10001.91.4
20002.11.1

 

 

Here are some more amazing fish farming books to guide and assist you further:

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