Other lipids – sterols, carotenoids, vitamin lipids, waxy esters and more
Lipids are remarkably diverse and their functions are diverse as well. While the phospholipid and triglyceride classes make up the bulk of lipids, the other classes are critical as well. It is important that there be a rich nutritional balance of all these lipids in your rotifer feed and enriched rotifers to assure healthy larval fish.
Vitamins are critically important, but information on the vitamin requirements of larval marine fish is scattered and difficult to pull together. John Halver has an excellent chapter in Fish Nutrition where he discusses the vitamins one by one; there is an excellent chart on p. 69 that lists the known vitamin deficiency effects for marine fish.
Using a fish egg standard and comparing the vitamins of enriched rotifers to eggs seems an excellent approach, but it is difficult to find comprehensive data on the vitamin content of different fish eggs.
(see nutrition chart in Section B.5.0 for egg and feed vitamin levels and levels in rotifers)
Closing statement – A Farmer’s approach to Nutrition
The complexity of nutrition is why we believe in a farmer’s approach to nutrition: Start with what nature gives you and what nature intended. If it works and is cost affective, stick with it. Fish and zooplankton have adapted over hundreds of millions of years to be what they are, to need what they need, and to get their nutrition from microalgae.
Microalgae are the basis of the marine food chain. Everything that is in zooplankton (in nature) and is transmitted to fish ultimately comes from microalgae. The key to good nutrition is to appropriately use high-quality microalgae, microalgae that have been the backbone of successful marine aquaculture for over 30 years.