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Environ Toxicol Chem. 2014 Jan;33(1):126-33. doi: 10.1002/etc.2396. Epub 2013 Nov 5.

A new approach for the laboratory culture of the fathead minnow, Pimephales promelas.

Author information

1
United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Research and Development, National Exposure Research Laboratory, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.

Abstract

Fathead minnows are routinely cultured for use in aquatic toxicology studies. A new mass culture system described in the present study consisted of 6 stainless steel tanks, each containing 68 fish and 20 spawning substrates. Spawning results are compared with a previous system of 22 individual glass aquaria, which contained 16 fish and 4 spawning substrates per tank. During a 19-mo period, the new system produced an average of 4105 eggs/d, compared with an average of 2465 eggs/d with the previous system. Labor and maintenance were reduced with the new system. The stainless steel tanks eliminated aquaria glass breakage, and daily water use was reduced by 45%. Analysis of reference toxicant data from fish cultured using both systems indicated no change in the sensitivity of the test animals. Analyses of 2009 egg production data determined that a 6:1 to 7:1 female to male ratio had a significantly positive impact on egg production levels and that 6-mo-old breeding stock should be introduced to the spawning tanks in mid-spring for optimal egg production during the rest of the year. Implementing a stainless steel mass culture system significantly increased efficiency of egg production; reduced turnaround delay of mature animal availability for toxicity and molecular testing; and reduced labor time, costs, and inherent safety hazards, compared with glass aquaria systems.

KEYWORDS:

Egg production; Fathead minnow; Mass culture system; Pimephales promelas; Water treatment system design

PMID:
24115165
DOI:
10.1002/etc.2396
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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