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Low water temperatures impacting fish growth?

Here's what you need to know.

Seasonal challenges for fish farmers

Fish farmers operating in regions with cold water face unique challenges in ensuring the well-being and growth of their fish. Cold-water fish, such as trout, are well adapted to thrive in these conditions, but they do become less active as water temperatures drop, leading to reduced feed intake and impaired metabolism. This slowdown in digestion and fat processing affects the overall growth and efficiency of the fish, making it a critical concern for aquaculture producers.

Precision nutrition for optimal performance

In the picturesque region of Kärnten, in the Austrian Alps, lies Kärnten Fisch, a family-owned company operating five fish farms. The Hofer family, who have been running the business since 2001, have experienced firsthand the difficulties of achieving substantial growth during the harsh Alpine winter, when water temperatures plummet to 3–8° Celsius for eight months each year.

Fam Hofer
“It is challenging to achieve reasonable growth with these extreme low water temperatures. You have to do everything so that the fish just grows better.”
– Andreas Hofer, Kärnten Fisch

In cold water, the trout’s natural lifestyle results in reduced appetite and slower fat digestion due to limited food availability. Feeds that work well in summer might prove inadequate in winter, leading to suboptimal results for farmers. Moreover, excessive feeding can overload the digestive tract, leading to a higher degree of pollution, particularly in farms with limited water availability.

Feed solutions to overcome cold-water challenges

Recognising the importance of overcoming these challenges, Alltech Coppens went on a mission to develop a trout feed concept that optimises digestion, health and performance during cold water conditions, empowering farmers to achieve year-round success. Extensive research at the Alltech Coppens Aqua Centre has led to groundbreaking insights and innovations, significantly improving fat digestibility in very cold water and addressing the altered fatty acid requirements of trout during these temperature drops.

Innovative cold-water feeds

Alltech Coppens’ winter feeds have proven to be game changers for trout farmers, providing a multitude of benefits even during the harshest winter conditions. These innovative feeds offer:

  • Improved digestibility: The feeds are designed to be highly digestible in cold water, reducing pollution and optimising feed conversion efficiency.
  • Enhanced fat and protein utilisation: By addressing the trout’s changed requirements for essential fatty acids, the feeds promote better utilisation of nutrients, ensuring fish growth and health.
  • Palatability and attraction: The R&D team at Alltech Coppens have conducted extensive feed trials to ensure that Coppens’ feeds are highly palatable, stimulating immediate feeding responses from the trout.
  • Increased biomass: These seasonal feeds contribute to stronger fish that digest and utilise the feeds well, ultimately promoting robust growth and performance.

Among the winter feeds that have gained exceptional results in cold conditions are the highly digestible Supreme-22, Supreme Astax, Ultra, and Crystal (Astax).

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Kärnten Fisch

“Since using Alltech Coppens feed, which is adapted for low water temperatures during winter, we saw significantly improved production. The fish are more eager to eat and grow better.

We believe that this is the crucial point: we have to make much better use of these winter months. We have now switched our entire production to Alltech Coppens feed. This feed is ideally suited for us — we really got growth over the winter, over these difficult winter months, which we actually didn’t have at all before.”

– Andreas Hofer, Kärnten Fisch

Transforming winter challenges into opportunities

Aquaculture producers face unique hurdles during winter, with low water temperatures impacting fish digestion and growth efficiency. However, with the latest advancements in precision nutrition, such as these innovative feeds offered by Alltech Coppens, fish farmers can turn these challenges into opportunities for thriving fish farms.

Take action! Contact us for year-round success.

Don’t let low water temperatures hinder your fish farm’s success. Alltech Coppens’ seasonal feeds maximise your fish farm’s performance and profitability and support the production of healthier, more robust fish. Contact us today to discover how our seasonal nutrition solutions can enhance your farm’s success in cold-water environments. Together, let’s make the most of every season for your fish farming success.

Get in touch

For advice on feed rates during cold periods, please get in contact with the Alltech Coppens team.