Improving cold storage of subitaneous eggs of the copepod Acartia tonsa Dana from the Gulf of Mexico (Florida, USA)

Guillaume Drillet, L.C. Lindley, A. Michels, J. Wilcox, N.H. Marcus

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Developing methods to store copepod eggs is necessary to increase the availability of copepods as a live food for the aquaculture industry and aquarium trade, and also to allow the exchange of copepods between researchers. The present study, evaluated the effect of glucose and two antibiotics (kanamycin sulphate and oxytetracycline HCl) on extending the shelf life of cold-stored subitaneous Acartia tonsa eggs. Also, egg development effects on the survival of the eggs were tested. Glucose did not have any significant effects on the survival of the eggs. However, the addition of antibiotics to the storage vials resulted in an increase of the survival of the eggs. In the best case, the shelf life of the eggs was almost doubled. After 7 days, the kanamycin+glucose treatment led to a hatching success of 86 +/- 1% of the hatchable eggs, while the untreated eggs presented a hatching success of 47 +/- 6%. However, long exposure to high concentrations of antibiotics was lethal to the copepod eggs. After more than 30 days of exposure to 100 mg L-1 of oxytetracycline, the survival of the eggs was lower than in the untreated samples. After 45 days, oxytetracycline-treated eggs (100 mg L-1) presented a hatching success of 4-5% while the non-stored eggs still had a hatching success of 9%, and the eggs treated with a lower concentration of antibiotics (10 mg L-1) showed a hatching success up to 21-23%. The size of the nauplii in all trials tended to decrease as the period of cold storage at 1 degrees C increased. We consider that the use of antibiotics at the right dosage to be a means to increase the storage capacity of the Gulf of Mexico strain of A. tonsa eggs, which do not show any capacity to be stored for long periods of time, compared with some other strains. In addition eggs that were between 5 and 7 h old survived longer when stored in the cold than eggs, which were freshly spawned or closer to hatching.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAquaculture Research
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)457-466
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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