Incorporating date pits Phoenix dactylifera and their sprouts in semi-purified diets for nile tilapia Oreochromis niloticus (L.)

Ibrahim E.H. Belal, M. A. Al-Owafeir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


The expansion in date processing has produced a large quantity of date pits Phoenix dactylifera L.: var. ruzeiz that could be used in animal feeds. To evaluate the nutritional value of date pits and their sprouts, two growth trials were conducted using semi-purified diets and fingerling filapia Oreochromis niloticus (L.). In the first trial, four isocaloric-isonitrogenous diets containing different levels (0, 15, 30, and 45%) of date pits as a replacement for corn starch were fed to three replicate groups of fingerlings with a mean initial weight of 3.09 ± 0.10 g/fish. At the conclusion of the 9-wk growth trial, final weight gain, feed conversion, specific growth rate and PER were significantly reduced in fish fed diets with all levels of date pits as compared to those fed the control diet (without date pits). However, there were no significant differences in these parameters for fish fed diets contained 15%, 30%, or 45% date pits. Body crude fat was gradually reduced as the level of date pits in the test diets was increased. Consequently, body moisture, crude protein and total ash were proportionally increased. In second trial, three isocaloric-isonitrogenous diets containing 0% date pits (control diet), 15% date pits sprouted for 15 d, and 15% date pits sprouted for 30 d were fed to triplicate groups of tilapia with mean initial weight 2.60 ± 0.09 g/fish) for 9 wk. Growth rates and body composition of fish fed diets containing date pits that were sprouted for 15 or 30 d were similar to that of those fed the control diet. Under the reported conditions the inclusion of sprouted date pits did not affect growth and body composition, whereas nonsprouted date pits negatively influenced fish performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)452-459
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the World Aquaculture Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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