Effects of Selected Chemotherapeutants on Nitrification in Fluidized-Sand Bioftlters for Coldwater Fish Production

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Commercial Fish and Shellfish Technologies Program, Virginia Tech

Four fish chemotherapeutants, formalin, benzalkonium chloride, chloramine-T, and hydrogen peroxide were evaluated for their effect on the nitrification efficiency of fluidized-sand biofilters. The chemotherapeutants were added at conventional concentrations to two small-scale (2,200 L) coldwater recirculating rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) culture systems each containing six fluidized-sand biofilters operating in parallel. Nitrification efficiency of biofilters was calculated before and after chemotherapeutant treatments by determining ammonia removal efficiency at ambient conditions, and also when challenged with a sudden increase of ammonium chloride at a concentration four times that of the ambient total ammonia-nitrogen (TAN). Two formalin treatments in recycle bath mode at 167 and 300 ppm were conducted with only the 300 ppm treatment having a significant negative effect on biofilter nitrification efficiency. Four single benzalkonium chloride treatments of one and 2 ppm were conducted; two static bath treatments and two recycle bath treatments. Of these four tests, only the recycle bath treatments caused biofilter nitrification efficiency to be significantly impaired. Two multiple treatments with benzalkonium chloride were conducted: one static bath treatment and one recycle.bath treatment. These treatments caused ammonia removal efficiency to decrease by 18% in the static bath treatment and by 63% in the recycle bath treatment. Of these two tests, only the recycle bath treatment caused a significant impairment of nitrification. Single static bath and recycle bath treatments with 9 ppm of chloramine-T both resulted in significant impairment of nitrification, as did a 12 ppm multiple static bath treatment. A single static bath treatment with 100 ppm of hydrogen peroxide caused almost total failure of nitrification within 24 h of treatment but biofilters were able to remove 23% of TAN within 48 h of treatment.

Coldwater Fish Production, Recirculating Aquaculture
Schwartz, M.F., Bullock, G.L., Hankins, J.A., Summerfelt, S.T. and Mathias, J.A., 2000. Effects of Selected Chemotherapeutants on Nitrification in Fluidized-Sand Bioftlters for Coldwater Fish Production. International Journal of Recirculating Aquaculture, 1(1). DOI: http://doi.org/10.21061/ijra.v1i1.1362