Effect of Feeding–Fasting Cycles on Oxygen Consumption and Bioenergetics of Female Yellow Perch

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We measured growth and oxygen consumption of age-1 yellow perch Perca flavescens subjected to ad libitum (control) or variable feeding cycles of 2 (i.e., 2 d of feed, 2 d of deprivation), 6, or 12 d for a 72-d period. Individual, female yellow perch (initial weight = 51.9 ± 0.9 g [mean ± SE]) were stocked in 110-L aquaria to provide six replicates per treatment and fed measured rations of live fathead minnow Pimephales promelas. Consumption, absolute growth rate, growth efficiency, and oxygen consumption were similar among feeding regimens. However, growth trajectories for fish on the 2-d cycle were significantly lower than other feed–fast cycles. Hyperphagia occurred in all treatments. Bioenergetics model simulations indicated that consumption was significantly underestimated (t = 5.4, df = 4, P = 0.006), while growth was overestimated (t = −5.5, df = 4, P = 0.005) for fish on the 12-d cycle. However, model errors detected between observed and predicted values were low, ranging from −10.1% to + 7.8%. We found that juvenile yellow perch exhibited compensatory growth (CG), but none of the feed–fast treatments resulted in growth overcompensation. Likewise, we found no evidence that respiration rates varied with CG, implying that yellow perch bioenergetics models could be used to predict the effects of feeding history and CG response on food consumption and fish growth.

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Transactions of the American Fisheries Society





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