Utilization of sodium bicarbonate as anesthetic during routine husbandry activities in ornamental fish
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The tropical ornamental fish industry requires the stock to be reared in captivity before being sold; thus, exposing them to various handling- and transport-related stressors. A number of commercially available anesthetics are used during fish husbandry procedures, but these products are expensive and not readily available to small-scale ornamental fish operators. The use of sodium bicarbonate as an inexpensive anesthetic during routine husbandry activities in molly, Poecilia sp., a freshwater ornamental fish was assessed in terms of its effect on sedation, recovery and survival post-exposure in three independent experimental runs. Juvenile molly were exposed to sodium bicarbonate at a concentration of 100 g L−1 and the time to sedation and recovery were monitored. It took longer for the fish to be fully sedated than their recovery. Survival of the fish a week post-exposure ranged 40-60%. Simulated transport of fish for 6 hrs in water containing 1 g L−1 of sodium bicarbonate showed survival ranging 70-100% a week after transport. These findings demonstrated that sodium bicarbonate could be potentially used as a low-cost anesthetic during handling and short-term transport of ornamental fish. Future studies shall focus on discovering the underlying physiological mechanisms in fish following sedation with this chemical.
Suggested CitationCaipang, C. M., Deocampo Jr., J. E., Pakingking , R. Jr., Suharman, I., Fenol, J. T., & Onayan, F. B. (2021). Utilization of sodium bicarbonate as anesthetic during routine husbandry activities in ornamental fish.
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