Site last updated October 21st 2017
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AQUACULTURE CONSULTING On site advice is available to existing and potential growers of Australian freshwater fish. Advice is based on over 30 years experience and hands on practice.
Also see the members area of this web site, Technical Information "Client area" Clients can log in here for technical information on jade perch, silver perch, sleepy cod and Murray cod. The information included here covers many aspects of these species, including habitat information which can be used to fill in some of the knowledge gaps. Information about jade perch goes back to the original "pioneer" growers who started growing jade perch in the 90s in Queensland Australia, the home of the species. This hand full of growers had to learn things the hard way. Their knowledge was built from a base knowledge on silver perch. There had been plenty of quality government research done with silver perch, but almost nothing had been, or ever was done, on jade perch. They learned everything the hard way. Information like, how low the water temperature could go, before they stopped growing, and at what temperature would they actually start to die, were learnt by killing fish. This sort of information, as well as over 30 of years knowledge, and experience, can be found here. The information is constantly being up-dated. To access this area of the jadeperch web site click on "membership" on the top menu bar. Once you have signed up you will notice that the "membership" button on the menue bar now has a "Technical Information" drop down list. Just click on Technical Information, and you are in. click for more
From out of nowhere, the aquaculture of Jade Perch has become one of the fastest growing freshwater fish species in the world.
For the aquaculture of any species to succeed there needs to be a few basic "boxes ticked". The success of JADE perch as an aquaculture species is because the species ticks so many of these boxes. They are relatively hard to kill, the grow fast, they don't need expensive aquaculture diets to grow well, and they are very popular as a table fish in one of the worlds biggest seafood markets, that's the Asian community. When I say the "Asian community" I am not saying, "Asian countries", but I am saying Asian communities in any country. In Australia, the species found its early market acceptance within the Chinese restaurants in the major capital cities of Australia. This provided the jumping off point for the species to gain its current success in Asian communities world wide. The biggest box the species has ticked it the "health" box. It is extraordinarily high in omega-3. With all the knowledge now known about the benefits of omega-3. The "health box tick", was the final quailty needed to guarantee the species market success. This market potential is massive. I predict this species will be produced in most countries around the world over the next few years. It is already settling into markets in countries like Vietnam, mainland China, Taiwan, and Malaysia. Europe and USA are starting to test the species too. There is no reason these countries, and any future country to try them will not see exactly the same growth in market demand as the first countries that tried it have enjoyed.
The name, "Jade Perch" was chosen because of the distinctive greenish, (JADE) colour displayed by the fish as the light catches the dorsal area scales. The name was chosen by 3 of the pioneer growers of JADE perch while sitting around the kitchen table of the, then president for the Aquaculture Association of Queensland Inc., Bruce Sambell. (The PERCH MAN.) The common, local name, was Barcoo Grunter, which does not sound as pleasant as JADE perch.
Healthy food - Australian Jade Perch
There are good and bad fats. We hear a lot about the "bad" saturated fats.
But some other fats, "good fats", like Omega-3 fatty acids are absolutely required for normal health and development. They're building blocks of every living cell in your body.
Omega-3 fatty acids must be obtained from the diet for good health.
Thousands of scientific research studies have shown that Omega-3s can help strengthen and protect every cell in your body - and especially those cells in your heart, brain and joints.
Omega-3s also have been shown to help lower triglyceride levels contributing to a 50% reduction in the risk of death from heart disease in people with a diet rich in Omega-3 nutrients.
Diets enriched with Omega-3 fatty acids may help prevent some risk factors associated with cardiovascular and heart disease.
It's important to note that you must get Omega-3s through diet or nutritional supplements because the human body can't make them on its own.
Omega-3s are essential nutrients found in fresh, Australian JADE Perch. They are scientifically proven to nourish every living cell, significantly impacting heart, brain and joint health.
Omega-3 benefits improve, Cartilage Health, Heart Health, Joint Health, Brain Health and Mother’s Health, not to mention our general health and well being.
You can improve your life with the proven health benefits of Omega-3 contained in quality Australian Jade Perch !
Australian Jade Perch fingerlings and fry for aquaculture are being produced in large numbers by some hatcheries in south Queensland. Jade Perch really seem to grow very fast. Some growers have even said, twice as fast as silver perch. The feeding behavior of Australian Jade Perch is normally vigorous in the extreme. The fish race towards the end of the pond where the approaching farmer is about to feed, creating quite a bow wave as they begin to break the surface with their heads. Once they reach the edge of the pond they will extent their entire head from the water in anticipation of a feed.
This behavior decreases in intensity as the temperature drops. Under 18c surface feeding will almost stop. Some farmers have experienced stock losses during winter. Although harvesting fingerlings in water temperatures around 14-15c without losses is common practice on some hatchery farms. Unlike wild caught fish, grow-out fish have large quantities of fat within their body cavity.
They grow extremely fast and will be highly suited to districts having moderate sub tropical to tropical temperatures. They are also proving to be a good species for recirculating systems, RAS. (Unlike Silver Perch which are very difficult to grow beyond a few hundred grams in a RAS.) See the members area for full details.
Jade perch are a freshwater species. However, they are quite hardy and can tolerate a range of water quality parameters. Intensive culture environments can at times result in poor water quality, and rapid changes could mean the difference between good growth rates and increase susceptibility to disease. Regular monitoring of water quality is strongly advised.
Feeding Jade Perch fry and fingerlings
There are a number of suitable foods that I have used over the years. Currently we use products from Big Nutrition www.bignutrition.com.auand Ridley.
I use one of the Ridley products for the baby fish. Native "DUST". This product is best suited to fish between 10mm and 100mm. Fish of larger sizes will eat this "dust" but they should be moved on to larger sized food as soon as possible. The dust spreads over the water surface allowing all the fish to get to the food.
All fish getting to food helps reduce excess size variation in fish. About half the food floats. Ideal as it allows visual observation of feeding behaviour. The "members area" has more detail about food including a video of the dust being fed to jade perch.
WARNING: There is another fish, the Scortum Hillii, commonly known as the Leathery Grunter. It is called the Leathery Grunter because of its incredibly tough eating quality. These two fish are very difficult for even the trained eye to tell apart ! The same name has been applied to similar looking fish from Gulf Drainage rivers in the northern part of Australia. Be sure to purchase your fingerlings from a reputable hatchery. The brood fish should be Scortum Barcoo from the Barcoo River Basin in Central Australia. This will ensure that you get the "good" eating fish.
One final comment, they grow bloody fast in the warm months (Sept-May) in South Queensland! We predict a great future for this fish.
Below are pictures of the "impostor fish," Scortum hilii. There is no noticeable difference in their appearance. These picture were taken on the river bank of a wild fish just caught in a gill net.
Click pictures to enlarge.
Pictured below left is a young jade perch with younger jade perch in its stomach. Right are market size jade perch.
Jade perch are cannibalistic.
For more jade perch information click here
The members area has detailed information about jade perch, including growing and disease management click for more
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