Oyeniyi Oluwaseun Veronica1, Ojuola Michael Olaemy2 , Oke Israel Opeyemi2*
1Nigeria Institute of Oceanography and Marine Research, P. M. B. 12729, Victoria Island Lagos.
2Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture Technology, School of Agriculture and Agricultural Technology, Federal University of Technology, P.M.B. 704, Akure, Ondo State.
(Manuscript received 14 February 2022; accepted for publication 20 May 2022)
Abstract. The experiment was conducted to assess the use of Abelmoschus esculentus leaves powder as binders in the production of fish feed pellets. Six experimental diets were formulated with three containing starch as binder while the other three contained A. esculentus as binder. Each diet contained maize or wheat individually or in combination as energy source. The diets were designated as MAI (Maize only), WHE (Wheat only), MAW (Maize and Wheat only), MAA (Maize and A. esculentus), WHA (Wheat and A. esculentus) and MWA (Maize, Wheat and Abelmoscus esculentus). Physical properties and dietary effects of the diets were assessed using Oreochromis niloticus fingerlings. There was significant difference (P<0.05) in the sinking rate (cm.sec-1), thickness strength (mm), water absorption index, hardness (mm) and water stability (%) and bulk density (g.cm-3) of experimental diets. Diet MAI (Maize only with corn starch) had a significantly slower sinking rate of 6.77±0.10 cm.sec-1 when compared to the other diets. Diets MAA (Maize only with A. esculentus) and MAW (Maize and Wheat with corn starch) had the highest water stability (88.90±0.46%) while the lowest was diet MAI (85.20±0.10%). Crushing load value for the diet MWA (Maize and wheat with A. esculentus) of 357.00±0.00N was the highest and 119.00±0.00 N for diet MAI was the least. There was significant difference (P<0.05) in the friability of experimental diets at different revolution speed. There were no significant differences (P>0.05) in the mean final weight, mean weight gain, specific growth rate, feed conversion ratio, and feed efficiency of experimental fish fed with the experimental diets. Fish fed diet MAA had a significantly higher (P<0.05) mean weight gain, specific growth rate, feed efficiency ratio compared to the fish fed other diets. The results from this experiment showed that A. esculentus leaf soaked for 24 hours can be used as binder in fish feed production.