Vol. 1, Issue 1 (2016)
Diet of synodontis victoriae (mochokidae) from Kunya beach lake Victoria, Kenya
Author(s): Wanyanga Aquiline, Yongo Edwine, Mwangudza Petronilla
Abstract: Studies on the diet of Synodontis victoriae were conducted from Kunya beach Lake Victoria, Kenya. Sampling was done four times: twice during rainy period (December, 2015) and twice during dry spell (January, 2016). The fish were caught using beach seine of mesh size 1.5-3.0 inches, length 350m and width 3m. Each specimen was measured in centimeter Fork length (FL, cm) and sex determined. The guts were then removed and preserved in 4% formalin prior to laboratory analysis. A total of 173 stomachs were examined, and the diet constituted of 9 food items out of which plant detritus, chironomids and copepods formed the major components. Spearman test revealed signiﬁcant similarities in diet with respect to sex, season and size classes (p<0.05). However, the fish fed more on plant detritus (index of preponderance: Ip = 24.0%)) during the dry season and more on chironomids (Ip = 24.0%) in the rainy season. In terms of size, smaller fish 8.0-9.9 cm FL fed more on zooplankton copepods (Ip = 22.4.0%), while plant detritus (Ip = 32.0%) dominated the diet of adults in the length group 14.0-15.9 cm FL. Synodontis victoriae was considered to be omnivorous from the nature of the food items eaten. We also recommended further studies of the diel feeding and spatial/temporal change in its diet since these were not covered in the present study.