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The development of bighead catfish (Clarias macrocephalus) aquaculture in Viet Nam has been constrained by the slow growth performance in the domesticated strain. Crossbreeding can be a solution to improve fish production. This study was aimed to evaluate the growth and survival performance of the second generation (G2) fingerlings crossbreeds (CMCT and CTCM) from two bighead catfish strains (wild Ca Mau, CM, and domesticated Can Tho, CT) compared to offspring from their original strains (G0-CT and G0-CM) and G1 crossbreeds (♀CM × ♂CT and ♀CT × ♂CM). The larvae were reared in 50-L tanks (3 to 5 replications) with the density of 1,000 individuals/tank and fed with Moina and artificial feed (40% protein). After 40 days of rearing, the fish grew differently among crosses (P<0.05). In which, the two best-growth groups included CM×CT crossbreeds (body weight of 1,114 mg and length of 4.55 cm) and pure crossbred line CTCM (1,050 mg and 4.51cm, respectively). The CTCM group was recorded the highest survival rate (37.8%) while G0-CT was the lowest (27.2%); however, the difference in survival was not significant (P>0.05). The performance of these crossbreeds should be investigated further at the grow-out stage to see whether crossbreeding between wild and cultured strains of bighead catfish may be used in practice to increase bighead catfish production.
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