Culture of some marine fishes in ponds receiving heated discharge water from a power plant.
Luebke, Richard W.
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Florida pompano (Trachinotus carolinus), Atlantic croaker (Micropogon undulatus), black drum (Pogonias cromis), red drum (Sciaenops ocellata), and striped mullet (Mugil cephalus) were cultured during 1972 in a series of 0.1 ha ponds receiving a constant supply of heated discharge water from Houston Lighting and Power Company's Cedar Bayou Electric Power Station near Baytown, Texas to test the quality of water passing through the power plant and to investigate the potential benefits associated with thermal effluents in relation to mariculture. These species were periodically sampled to determine survival, growth, and condition. Several saltmarsh fishes were also cultured to determine whether water quality was sufficient to permit reproduction. Hydrological data was taken daily in the ponds. Most saltmarsh species reproduced in the ponds. Survival was good for black drum and striped mullet (69 and 78%, respectively). Florida pompano suffered complete mortality when water temperatures dropped below 15 C. Atlantic croaker and red drum suffered heavy mortality when an undetermined toxic substance passed through the power plant. Throughout the study, Florida pompano, Atlantic croaker, black drum, red drum and striped mullet gained an average of 0.66, 0.51, 1.48, 2.24 and 0.69 g and 1.13, 0.50, 0.81, 0.57 and 0.62 mm per day, respectively. Mean Ksl values for these species ranged from 2.80 to 3.74, 1.93 to 2.63, 2.55 to 2.91, 1.66 to 1.94 and 2.07 and 2.48, respectively. Food conversion ranges for Atlantic croaker, black drum, red drum and striped mullet were 0.21 to 3.82, -7.09 to 0.76, 2.70 to 6.61 and -182.08 to 0.31, respectively. Length-weight relationships were determined for all species; standard length-total length converstion equations were calculated for all species except Florida pompano.