Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Science

Program

Biology

Supervisor(s)

Bryan Neff

Abstract

Growth rate is the most important trait that can be manipulated to create more efficient aquaculture. Crossbreeding, where different populations are bred, has the potential to increase performance through release from inbreeding depression. I crossed a farm population of Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) with seven wild populations, then compared growth rate, feed conversion efficiency, swimming speed and metabolic rate between the crossbred and original farmed lines. Crossbreeding resulted in increased growth rates, but had no effect on the other traits. I next evaluated the feasibility of using a diet that replaced fish meal with corn gluten meal and poultry meal. The alternative diet had no effect on growth rate or survival, but led to increased fat content and decreased tissue pigmentation. My thesis supports using crossbreeding in salmon aquaculture to increase growth rate, but found a low fish meal diet was not viable due to its effects on tissue colour.


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