Turkish Journal of Biology






This paper reviews the latest findings in larval feeding and digestion of decapod crustacean larvae. The live feeds and manufactured feeds are discussed in relation with the digestive capability of various decapod crustacean larvae. Although some larvae such as penaeid shrimps are successfully cultured on artifical diets, most of lar-val decapod crustaceans are still heavily dependent on live organisms as food (i. e. micro-algae, Arte-mia). Studies with free-living nematodes as an alternative live feed for penaeid larvae are encouraging. Latest findings have demonstrated that omnivorous larvae (e.g. protozoeal stages of penaeids, Arte-mia, copepods) have high levels of proteolytic enzymes and a short gasto-evacuation time that enable these larvae to successfully survive on formulated diets. The digestive enzyme levels in carnivorous larvae (e.g. caridean larvae, lobster larvae), however, is so low that they cannot feed on artificial diets and require easily digestible prey in order to survive. Omnivorous larvae (e.g. crab larvae, mysis stages of penaeids) possess an intermediate level of digestive enzymes and are capable of utilising zooplankton, mikroalgae or even manufactured feeds. It appears that, in order to replace live feeds with artificial feeds for a wider range of crustaceans, the feeds must be made more digestible or digestive enzymes must be incorporated into the feeds.


Larval feeding, decapod, larvae, penaeid, digestive enzymes, larval feeds

First Page


Last Page


Included in

Biology Commons