Book Review - Fish Nutrition (Third Edition)
The first edition of Fish Nutrition, edited by J. E. Halver, was published in
1972. It brought together reviews from specialists across a broad range of basic
and applied topics relating to the feeding and nutrition of fish. Publication
coincided with a resurgence of interest in aquaculture and the book became established
as a key reference source in a rapidly expanding field. An enlarged, second edition
was published in 1989. In producing a third edition, the editors have sought
to incorporate selections of the most important new information produced since
1989. A single additional chapter has been contributed by the editors and there
are new emphases and treatments in several chapters, which reflect reworking
and changes in authorship.
Reviewed by: Stephen Goddard
Department of Marine Science and Fisheries,
College of Agricultural and Marine Sciences,
Sultan Qaboos University,
Sultanate of Oman
The book opens with a chapter contributed by Bureau, Kaushik and Cho, which
deals with the topic of bioenergetics. This chapter has been rewritten and
expanded to reflect the growth of research activity in this field. Emphasis
is on fish bioenergetics in an aquaculture setting and topics lead the reader
in a logical sequence from historical review through to current perspectives
and limitations. The contents of Chapters 2-6 follow those of earlier volumes
giving detailed descriptions of the nutrient requirements of fish. Vitamin
requirements are reviewed by Halver in Chapter 2, amino acid and protein
requirements by Wilson in Chapter 3, lipid requirements by Sargent, Tocher
and Bell in Chapter 4 and mineral requirements by Lall in Chapter 5. These
are all solid contributions from leading specialists in their fields and
these opening chapters form the core of the book. Whilst much of this basic
information is now widely available in books and reviews elsewhere, the authors
have performed a useful task in their review of recent literature. The chapter
dealing with lipid requirements deserves special mention. Written in an engaging
style, the authors have reviewed the topic in depth and expanded the sections
dealing with the lipid requirements of marine fish and larvae.
In Chapter 6, Dabrowski and Guderley review intermediary metabolism. This
is a contribution by new authors who examine in detail the metabolism of
carbohydrates and proteins. Nutritional physiology is reviewed by Rust in
Chapter 7. The diversity of form and function of the fish digestive tract
is described and an expanded section covering larval fish is included. Liberal
use is made of b/w photographs whilst readers are directed to a URL for color
versions. Nutritional pathology is reviewed by Roberts in Chapter 8. The
content follows very closely the contribution of Roberts and Bullock to the
second edition. Whether or not this reflects a paucity of recent research
in this field during the last decade is left for specialists to decide. Chapter
9, by Hardy and Burrows, leads the reader through the applied aspects of
diet formulation and manufacturing techniques. Expanded sections dealing
with larval feeds and low-pollution feeds have been added. The treatment
is thorough and the coverage of formulation methods and chemical and biological
evaluations of feeds will be of particular value to new researchers in the
Readers of this journal will welcome the prediction, that ‘research
and production of feeds formulated specifically for use in recirculation
systems will be a growing sector of fish nutrition in the next decade’.
Chapter 10 is a review of adventitious toxins in feeds by Hendricks. Most
of the material is familiar from the previous edition, with added discussion
of the roles of recently encountered toxins e.g. the mycotoxin fumonisins.
Chapter 11 is a short review by Piggot and Tucker of special feeds with a
focus on some of the key major ingredients. Chapter 12 is a review by Gatlin
of nutrition and fish health, and in particular the relationships between
diet and immune function. This is new material added since the previous edition
in what is now clearly an expanding field of investigation. Diet and fish
husbandry, are reviewed by Lovell in Chapter 13. This follows the same format
as in the previous edition, with details of the nutrient requirements and
feeding practices for channel catfish, salmonids, tilapias and penaeid shrimp.
The chapter brings into a practical perspective some of the previous material
presented. A final chapter contributed by the book’s editors, Halver
and Hardy, briefly summarizes patterns of nutrient flow and retention. An
appendix lists examples of feed formulations, nutrient content of ingredients,
examples of feeding charts and the scientific names of some aquaculture species.
The editors took on a formidable task in compiling a book of this scope and
overall they have done it successfully. The book is comprehensive, there
is little unnecessary repetition and the topics follow a logical sequence.
Some short chapters may have best been combined with others e.g. information
in the chapter dealing with special feeds could have been incorporated readily
into the chapter dealing with diet formulation, which already covered most
of the same topics. Isolated references to crustacean nutrition are found
in three chapters. Readers may more usefully have been referred to specialized
publications on this topic (e.g. D’Abramo et. al., 1997). The information
presented is well referenced at the end of each chapter, although the omission
of journal article titles in reference lists will frustrate some readers.
Whilst new glossy covers have been added, the use of the same design and
layout for the text and inclusion of many of the same figures and illustrations
as in the previous edition do give the book a somewhat dated feel. There
are few typographical or production errors for a book of this length although
this reviewers copy had Table 13.4, which lists diet formulations for salmonids,
duplicated at the expense of Table 13.12, which should have listed formulations
for practical shrimp diets. The inclusion of a single color diagram (Fig.
12.1) is curious given that other flow charts were apparently submitted to
the publishers as color slides where clarity could have benefited from color
Since the publication of the previous edition of Fish Nutrition, numerous
reviews, book chapters and both general and specialized books dealing with
fish nutrition have been published. There is now a choice of texts available,
with more accessible information, to support undergraduate courses in fish
nutrition and aquaculture (e.g. De Silva and Anderson, 1995; Lovell, 1998;
Guillaume et al., 2001). This new edition of Fish Nutrition will however
continue its role as a leading source of reference for a wide readership,
drawn from educators, researchers, aquaculturists and feed manufacturers.
D’Abramo, L. R., Conklin, D.E. and Akiyama, D.M. (eds.). 1997. Crustacean
587pp. World Aquaculture Society, Baton Rouge, Louisiana
De Silva, S.S. and Anderson, T.A. 1995. Fish Nutrition in Aquaculture. 319pp.
and Hall, London, U.K.
Guillaume, J., Kaushik, S., Bergot, P. and Metailler, R. (eds.). 2001. Nutrition
Feeding of Fish and Crustaceans. 408 pp. Springer Verlag, Heidelberg,
Lovell, T. (ed.).1998. Nutrition and Feeding of Fish (Second edition). 267
Academic Publishers, Boston, U.S.A.