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Summary

The present 20-day trial was performed in order to improve growth of tench Tinca tinca (L.) larvae reared intensively in a controlled environment. Larvae of 4.53 mm initial length, 45 per dm3, were fed each day with live Artemia nauplii for 12, 18 or 24 h at 28°C. Final survival rates were very high in all treatment groups, ranging from 88.9 to 91.8%. Duration of daily feeding significantly affected growth and final condition, expressed by Fulton's coefficient (K) (P ≤ 0.05, Duncan's test). The fastest larval growth (17.6 mm total length, TL; 88.8 mg body weight, BW) and the best condition (K = 1.54) were recorded in the group fed 24 h each day. The second best results were attained with the larvae fed 18 h a day (16.5 mm TL, 67.9 mg BW, K = 1.40) whereas those fed 12 h daily grew the slowest (13.5 mm TL, 31.7 mg BW) and showed the worst condition (K = 1.19). Thus, to maximize growth and condition of tench larvae being reared at the optimal growth temperature, intensive 24 h feeding is necessary.