Use of Probiotics in Feed
Probiotics are non-pathogenic live microorganisms that are given to animals to improve growth rate, feed consumption efficiency, and health. Probiotics are a form of supplementary feed in the form of live microbial cells that are beneficial for their host animals by balancing the microbiological conditions of the animals. Probiotics are often used in the fisheries sector in feed and mixed water media. In feed, it is used by mixing feed ingredients with probiotics.
Provision of artificial feed in the form of factory-produced pellets with high protein content for catfish cultivation should be moistened first and then given to fish, this is because catfish are classified as voracious fish and eat their fill, then the feed in the fish’s stomach expands so that the fish’s stomach becomes swollen which is not infrequently followed by tearing of the small intestine so that it makes the fish sick and hangs on the surface of the water and can cause death with an enlarged stomach.
In mixing pellets with water, probiotics should be added by going through the fermentation process first, some fish farmers who usually provide commercial feed for fish farming get surprising results after applying probiotics. By using probiotics, fish cultivators claim to be able to reduce the FCR (Feed Conversion Ratio) in the use of commercial feed up to 0.8 kg to produce 1 kg of fish. In addition, the use of probiotics can also speed up maintenance time.
Based on field experience using probiotics, fish growth is faster than without probiotics. In addition, the mortality rate of fish is also small and the fish meat that is harvested becomes denser. With probiotics, you can get good quality catfish harvests. This is indicated by faster fish growth so that it can be harvested immediately, the fish size is uniform, and does not smell of mud or soil. This probiotic can easily be obtained at animal feed stores with several brands such as: EM-4, Probiofish, Migro, Raja Lele and others. With a mixture of probiotics and pellets, this makes the metabolism and digestion of fish perfect. Mostly, 90% of the feed that enters the body will be fish meat.
However, the application of probiotics in fish feed does require patience. Because fish cultivators have to mix probiotics with fish feed every day.
Feed management. In addition to selecting the right type of feed, there are certain techniques in processing feed before use. That is through the application of a feed fermentation system so that the digestibility value of feed increases. Fermentation is the process of breaking down carbohydrates and amino acids under anaerobic conditions (without the need for oxygen). In the process of fermentation, chemical changes occur in foodstuffs caused by enzyme activity.
Purpose of Feed Fermentation: Cutting the protein peptide chain from the long protein chain, bacteria will utilize the protein, so that bacteria will thrive in the feed (substrate); Utilization of fiber by cellulolytic bacteria and converted into protein.
Fermentation is done by adding probiotics as much as 2-4 ml/Kg of feed, left for 2-7 days in limited oxygen (an aerobic). On the 3rd day of fermentation, it turns out that the feed has been overgrown with microbes so that it is whitish in color.
Advantages of Fermented Feed with Probiotics:
- Use of feed is more efficient
- Cuts protein peptide chains, into short chain proteins
- Feed can be digested immediately
- Softer pellet texture
- Increase feed nutrition
- Stimulate fish appetite
- Low fish mortality rate
- Harvested fish meat is denser
- Good for water conservancy
Biofloc System Catfish Cultivation Feed Management
To find out the maximum feed requirement, at the time of feeding, the fish are fed until they are full (until no fish come) or the fish do not respond to the feed and the amount of feed given is the maximum requirement. If the feed is given 100% of the fish’s needs, then the level of feed efficiency reaches 80%, while if the feed is given 80% of the fish needs, the feed efficiency can reach 100% (80% full is the feed given only 80% of the maximum feed requirements).
In a cultivation system that implements a biofloc system, it has several advantages in addition to lower feed conversion, after the biofloc is formed, feed efficiency must be carried out so that feed costs can be reduced as low as possible, while the steps that can be taken are as follows:
- Feed can be reduced or reduced from the actual portion or recommended to satisfy the fish so that the fish get used to eating biofloc.
- Reduce protein content in feed from a minimum of 30% to 25%. In this case, it can be done by replacing feed with a protein content of 30% to 25% or by mixing feed with 30% protein with feed with a protein content of 19 – 21% with a ratio of 1: 1. From the two methods it is recommended to mix feed because it does not change the feed. in total. To mix 30% protein feed with 19-21% protein feed, it should be done by adding a fermentation process with the addition of probiotics.