Tilapia Fish Farming: Practical Manual (Tilapia Fish Farmers)

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Tilapia Farming – Practical Manual A Compilation of Tilapia Farming Technical Information Tilapia the super-fish. Tilapia fish is commercially cultured fish that is easy to grow, fast to reproduce, adaptable to farming settings and conditions, while at the same time is resilient to disease and highly acceptable by American consumers. Tilapia fish have a mild, white consistent flesh denser than cutfish, but less dense than salmon; a mild flavor that may accompany any other food dish. This appeals to farmers and consumers. Tilapia has become the 5th most consumed fish in United States in the last decade, behind only to Tuna fish. The many desirable traits makes Tilapia fish an ideal aquaculture specie. Most commercialized species include the Mozambique (Oreochromis mossambicus or Tilapia mossambica), blue Tilapia (O. aureus or Tilapia aurea), Nile Tilapia (O. niloticus or Tilapia nilotica), Zanzibar or Wami Tilapia (O. hornorum or Tilapia urolepis), and the lesser known redbelly Tilapia (O. zilli or Tilapia zilli) and O. Rendelli. These species known to current markets today contribute about 4% of the total Tilapia aquaculture production worldwide. Species Origen and world distribution Tilapias are native to Africa and the Middle East. Once foreign to the United States, populations of Tilapia are now established in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Florida, Wyoming, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Texas. Tilapia was introduced to North America, South America and the Carribean islands in the early 1950’s Its generic term Tilapia is used to designate a group of commercially farmed fish belonging to the family Cichlidae. The African native Bechuana word “thiape” gave origin to it present name, the word meaning fish. Bechuana a former name for a member of the Bantu people of Botswana, Africa. Tilapias are classified in the large order of fish genera inhabiting fresh and brackish waters of Africa, the Middle East, coastal India, Central and South America and most recently USA where is considered an invasive specie requiring State certification for commercial possesion. Mouth-Brooding Tilapia Genera Tilapia of the genera Sarotherodon and Oreochromis parents will incubate and protect the young in their mouths (mouth brooding); a genera survival trait and distinguishing characteristic of caring parents; such behavior enhancing the offspring survival allowing great proliferation. Specific reproduction roles are seen in Oreochromis, these species distinguished by maternal mouth-brooding while parental fish prepare reproduction grounds keeping any intruders from the maternity ward grounds. After inception care of the young is performed primarily by the female fish carrying the young fish – fray – in its mouth until the tiny creatures are self sufficient and can protect themselves from larger bigger, praying fish. A great survival and adaption trait that increases survival rates substantially. The article below summarizes the potential of Tilapia as daily food staple affordable to farm, its acceptability and future markets. Table of Contents  Species Origen and Distribution  Mouth-Brooding Tilapia Genera  Tilapia is a Farmed Fish of Biblical Fame  Tilapia Farming Considerations – Tilapia a Super-Fish 1. Oreochromis Mozambicus 2. Oreochromis Niloticus 3. Oreochromis Aureus 4. Hybrid Tilapia 5. O.Hornorum  Tilapia Fish Old and Modern History  The Potential to Hybridize Tilapia  “Florida Red” Tilapia from Mozambique – Blue Tilapias parents  Tilapia Purebreds and Hybrids Species  Tilapia Sexual Maturity – Tilapia Longevity 

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