Authors: Nogales-Merida S, Gobbi P, Józefiak D, Mazurkiewicz J, Dudek K, Rawski M, Kierończyk B, Józefiak A
Publications: Reviews in Aquaculture
Recognizing the importance of reducing fish meals in fish feeds to ensure the economic and environmental sustainability of aquaculture operations, there have been growing interests in using insect meals as a protein source in aquaculture feeds. Increasing number of studies have been conducted to test the effects of insect meals as substitutes of fish meals in feeds of various fish species with varying degrees of success. A meta-analysis was carried out to quantify the effects of insect meals on growth performance of fish. The meta-analysis indicated that in general low or moderate dietary incorporation levels of insect meals did not affect the growth of fish in comparison to fish meal-based diets. High dietary inclusion levels of different insect species appeared to have divergent effects on fish growth. While higher than 29% (±3%) dietary inclusion levels of black solider fly meals depressed the growth performance, yellow mealworm seemed to be well tolerated by fish. Full-fat and defatted black soldier fly meals did not seem to differ in their effects on fish growth performance but this should be viewed as inconclusive due to varying degrees of defatting and highly variable nutrient compositions of the insect meals. Overall the results suggest that insect meals are promising novel protein sources for aquaculture feeds. More research is warranted to further elucidate the various influencing factors on the effectiveness of the dietary inclusions of insect meals in aquaculture feeds, as well as to integrate and translate this information into practical feed formulations.