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29 January, 2009

Management of Shrimp Farming in the First Months Phase 03 – Feeding Management

Regarding financial, shrimp feed (especially in intensive shrimp farming) is a very important factor for being the largest contributor in terms of production costs. Feeding programs that are not prepared carefully by following the shrimp need level, its can reduce the level of benefits to be obtained in one period of shrimp culture.

In normal conditions, the shrimp need to feed will increase, so that the feed preparation programs need to be done since from starting cultivation of shrimp fries until until the shrimps have been deemed eligible for a normal harvest.

Management of shrimp feeding in the first months phase as a beginning of a feeding program in a cultivation period is very determined by an availability of natural feed in pond waters. The natural fed availability is very influenced by land preparation process for shrimp fries stocking which is conducted before the process of fries stocking. If the natural feed for shrimps which are available in the pond is relatively abundant, so artificial feeding for shrimps in this phase is relatively late. Otherwise, if the availability of natural feed in pond water is very measly, so the artificial feeding should be done immediately. In general, feeding management of shrimps in the first months phase are like the explanation belows:
  1. The initial fries stocking phase till to sub-phase of the second week, at this sub-phase the natural feed is the main of feed source for fry / small shrimps. the availability factor of natural feed in pond waters will very determine when to start given artificial feed. The discussion on natural feed has been described in the earlier discussion

    A needed matter to do is monitoring to behavior and appearing of small shrimp in pond water as indicator of shrimp need to feed which its supply from outside, if availability of natural feed within pond water have fallen short requirement of shrimp population. Toward this condition the shrimp usually will do convoy within pond water in order to look for other feed, because within the pond water natural feed have fallen short for shrimp population any more.

    In an effort to anticipate the conditions of lack of availability of natural feed for shrimp at a given time, then in the mid-sub phase of the second week should have been started artificial feeding on crumble size with “blind feeding” system. The “blind feeding” program can be interpreted as a way of feeding to shrimp with regardless of the amount / weight of feed and the feeding frequency. The main purpose of the "blind feeding" is introducing artificial feed to shrimp fries / small shrimps, so that if in a certain time the natural feed in pond water was not sufficient, expected the fries / small shrimp was accustomed to these artificial feed.

  2. The sub-phase of the third week till to sub-phase of the fourth weeks, at this sub-phase the small shrimsp usually are familiar with artificial feed through the "blind feeding" program conducted in the previous sub-phase. Total weight of feed and feed sizes are provided at the time had begun to be measured with daily feeding frequency 2-5 times depending on the condition of shrimps.

    In this sub-phase, shrimp feeding management should already well programmed which is reference to development, conditions and needs of shrimp at a certain moment. In an effort to know the effectiveness and relevance of initial feeding program that has been applied then at the end of the sub-phase of the fourth weeks shrimp sampling should be performed to measure the average body weight of shrimps, condition and quality of shrimps, and to predict the population density of shrimps. Based on sampling results were then adjusted back to the feeding program based estimates have been made.
Based on the above discussion, then the thing to note on the first months phase is a time of transition for shrimp from natural feed to artificial feed. Transition period in the shrimp culture cycle is relatively different between the one period with another periods, so the observation of behavioral factors and the appearance of small shrimps in the pond waters need to be carefully.

The detailed discussion of the feeding program in a period of shrimp culture has been described in previous discussions.

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