Comparison of time-restricted and ad libitum self-feeding on the growth, feeding behavior and daily digestive enzyme profiles of Atlantic salmon

Shi, C; Liu, Y; Yi, M; Zheng, J; Tian, H; Du, Y; Li, X; Sun, G

Chinese Journal of Oceanology and Limnology 35(4): 729-736


DOI: 10.1007/s00343-017-5346-8
Accession: 064970325

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Although it has been hypothesized that a predictable feeding regime in animals allows physiological variables to be adjusted to maximize nutrient utilization and, hence, better growth performance, the assumption has rarely been tested. This study compares the effects of time-restricted versus free access self-feeding on the growth, feeding behavior and daily digestive enzyme rhythms of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). In an experiment that lasted 6 weeks, fish (109.9 g) were divided into two groups: group 1 had free access to a self-feeder (FA); group 2 received three meals per day (2 h per meal) at dawn, midday and dusk via a time-restricted self-feeder (TR). At the end of the experiment, the fish were sampled every 3 h over a 24-h period. The results showed that the Tr fish quickly synchronized their feeding behavior to the feeding window and their blood glucose showed a significant postprandial increase, while Fa fish displayed no statistically significant rhythms (P>0.05). Pepsin activity of Tr fish also showed a significant daily rhythm (P 0.05). In conclusion, the study failed to confirm a link between the entrainment of daily digestive enzyme profiles and growth performance, with the Tr group showing comparatively poor blood glucose regulation.