Spawning and Hatchery Technology to Improve Hybrid Catfish Production

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Alabama Catfish Inc. d/b/a Harvest Select Farm
P.O. Box 560
Inverness, MS 38753
Principal Investigator


NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: Catfish imports are coming from third world nations capable of producing catfish and selling lower prices than American counterparts. Therefore, methods that improve efficiency and reduce the cost of producing catfish would be a tremendous asset to the industry. The hybrid catfish between channel catfish female and blue catfish males has been shown to have many superior characteristics compared to channel catfish, the species which accounts for virtually all catfish culture in the US. The most reliable method to produce hybrid catfish is by hormonal induction of channel catfish for ovulation, hand stripping of eggs, and artificial fertilization with blue catfish sperm, and hatching in troughs. Limited fry production is a major impediment for large-scale adoption of the hybrid catfish fry production. Research on the hybrid catfish production will focus to optimize LHRHa dosages based on gonadal maturity of female catfish, develop techniques to determine egg quality, optimize antifungal formalin treatments and to determine proper nutritional preparation of broodstock to further optimize hybrid fry production. Economic analyses on the risk of producing the hybrid fry based on best treatments would be compared with the traditional method of channel catfish fry production.