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The effect of different alkalinity levels on Litopenaeus vannamei reared with biofloc technology (BFT)

Furtado, Plínio S., Poersch, Luis H., Wasielesky, Wilson, Jr.
Aquaculture international 2015 v.23 no.1 pp. 345-358
Litopenaeus vannamei, alkalinity, ammonia, biofilm, biofloc technology, carbon, pH, photosynthetic bacteria, rearing, shrimp, sodium bicarbonate, stocking rate, total suspended solids, water quality
The initial stages of rearing marine shrimp using biofloc technology (BFT) involve the biofloc formation process. At the same time, there is an increase in the levels of total suspended solids and a decrease in alkalinity and pH. This reduction of alkalinity and pH occurs due to the consumption of inorganic carbon by the autotrophic bacteria present in the bioflocs and biofilms. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of different alkalinities on water quality and the zootechnical performance of the marine shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei in a BFT system. The experiment consisted of four treatments, with three replicates each: 75, 150, 225 and 300 mg CaCO₃/L. To maintain the alkalinity at the established level, sodium bicarbonate was applied. For the experiments, twelve experimental units (area = 0.20 m²) with an effective volume of 50 L were stocked with 30 juvenile L. vannamei (0.20 ± 0.07 g), to achieve a stocking density of 150 shrimps/m²and were maintained for an experimental period of 49 days. The 75 treatment presented the highest levels of ammonia and nitrite throughout the study, compared to the 150 and 300 treatments. The results showed that higher alkalinity favors biofloc formation and the establishment of nitrifying bacteria.