Our Objectives

The research program of the UG/OMNR Fish Nutrition Research Laboratory focuses on different objectives related to current and future needs of the fish culture industry.

  • To support fish culture for rehabilitation of native stocks
  • To promote sustainable aquaculture and a clean environment
  • To maximize utilization of by-products for fish production
  • To provide open-feed formulae to Government and industry
  • To offer training at the B.Sc, M.Sc. and Ph.D. levels
  • To apply scientific nutrition to fish biology
  • To collaborate with national and international institutions


Current Research Projects


1) Modelling Growth and Nutrient Utilization in Salmonid Fish

Project systematically investigating the patterns of growth and nutrient deposition and utilization in salmonid fish species with the objective of developing more rational and robust production, feed requirement, and waste outputs models for fish culture operations. Validation of waste outputs predictions obtained with our models at a cage farm located at the Experimental Lake Area (ELA) over five production cycles.

Collaborators: K. Hua, A. Dumas, J. France, CFM de Lange, S. Birkett (U Waterloo), G. Durant & F.S. Watson (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources), D. Stechey (Canadian Aquaculture Systems), and P. Azevedo & C. Podemski (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)


2) Essential Amino Acid Utilization and Requirements of Fish and Shrimp

Multifaceted suite of research projects focusing on 1) the efficiency of amino acid utilization and the determinants of protein deposition in salmonid species, 2) the fine characterization of the lysine, methionine and arginine requirements of rainbow trout and shrimp, and 3) the determination of the bioavailability/bio-efficacy of essential amino acids (lysine, methionine, arginine) in ingredients from various origins.  Collaborators: D. Poppi, W. Ho, E.R. El-Haroun, K. Hua, L. Pena, J. Palma (U. of Algarves), R. L. Payne & A. Lemme (Evonik-Degussa)


3) Meta-Analysis of Fish Meal Replacement Studies using a Modelling Approach

The goal of this study is to re-evaluate the results of published studies on fish meal replacement by plant protein sources through a systematic and statistically sound meta-analysis approach. This project at its base involves the development of various models and tools (database, web-based software) allowing systematic analysis and classification of information from published studies and input of new data by research partners. Collaborators: K. Hua, D. Bellis (United Soybean Board), E. Herman (USDA).


4) Novel Processing Methods and Nutritional Strategies to Improve the Feeding Value of Plant Protein Ingredients

This project focuses on the development and evaluation of novel processing methods to improve the feeding value of various plant protein ingredients for fish. Methods and strategies examined include bio-bleaching of yellow pigments in corn gluten meal, enzymatic degradation of natural compounds or contaminants in corn and soy products, and supplementation of high plant diets with conditionally essential nutrients. Collaborators:  P. Saez, J. Hooft, W.Y. Ho, J.L. Atkinson, G. Dagenais & G.W. Vandenberg (Laval U), E. Abdelaal (AAFC), N. Young & M.D. Drew (U Sask), P.M. Encarnacao (Biomin), R. Blaszczyk (Casco).


5) Flexible, Low Inputs, Production Strategies and Feeds for Inland and Coastal Tilapia Aquaculture in Asia.

This project aims to improve the productivity of low input aquaculture systems in Asia through identification of suitable feeding strategies and the development of simple models. Collaborators: M.K. Chowdhury, M. Dei (WorldFish, Malaysia), W.K. Ng (U Sains Malaysia).


6) Nutritive Value of Rendered Animal Proteins and Fats for Aquaculture Species & Targeted Uses for these Ingredients in AquaFeeds.

This project reviews current information on the nutritive value of animal proteins and fats for aquaculture species and summarize key findings into a technical document (book) that will be distributed by the National Renderers Association. Collaborators: K. Hua, E. El-Haroun, F. Bisplinghoff  & S. Nates (Fats and Proteins Research Foundation).


7) Conditional Essentiality of Dietary Nucleotides or Nucleosides for Salmonid Fish

This project examines the effect of dietary nucleotides on growth, development and disease resistance of Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout. The project also involves the development of a HPLC method to quantify nucleotides and nucleosides in feeds and feedstuffs and the construction of a mathematical model of nucleotides and nucleosides utilization by fish. Collaborators: S. Gunther, K. Hua, J. Cant.





Click on the following links to read more about our research:


Principles of Fish Nutrition - A collection of technical documents

Our list of our scientific publications

Some of our scientific and technical presentations

Department of Animal
and Poultry Science,
University of Guelph,
Guelph, Ontario,

Tel. +1 (519) 824-4120 ext.53668 or 56688

Fax. +1 (519) 767-0573


Contact Us