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Role of chironomid larvae in the diet of catfish, Clarias batrachus

Sujata Kumari & Arun Kumar*
University Department of Zoology, B.N.M.University, Madhepura, Bihar, India
Received : 18th December, 2019 ; Revised : 21st January, 2020

Abstract: Six months-long experiment was carried out in a fish pond at Kahara Block in Saharsa (Bihar), India from September 2018 to February 2019 to evaluate the role of Chironomid larvae in the diet of catfish, Clarias batrachus. The composition of the benthic macro-invertebrates at the bottom indicated that Chironomidae was most dominant group in this pond. The body-weight percentage of the organisms showed that Chironomids and Oligochaetes were major two groups. The quantitative
and qualitative studies of Chironomid larvae indicated that there was monthly variation in the abundance of Chironomids. The highest (3695.19 m
-2) and the lowest (517.15 m-2) abundance of Chironomids in 3 samples were recorded in the month of January 2019 and October 2018, respectively. Gut content analysis suggested that Chironomids was dominant food item in the diet of Clarias batrachus. The maximum 768 and minimum 25 occurrences were recorded in the months of December
and October 2018, respectively in 5 fishes sampled from the experimental pond. The electivity indices suggested a shifting to Chironomid larvae from negative selection to positive selection in different months.

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