Single-Course English 5 ECTS

Fish nutrition and bioenergetics

Overall Course Objectives

The overall aim of the course is to introduce students to the field nutrition and bioenergetics of fish, and how it may be applied to individuals or groups of fish. The objective of the course is to provide students with an understanding of nutrition; how nutrients are assimilated, requirement for nutrients, and their metabolic fate. The course aims to provide the students with an insight into metabolism and respiration in fish, utilization of substrates, and how they can be measured. Ultimately this should allow students to formulate a diet for fish that can applied together with a growth or production model.

Learning Objectives

  • Describe the digestive system and processes in fish
  • Account for the biochemistry of macronutrients and their metabolic pathways in fish
  • Describe respiration and oxygen requirements in fishes and how these are influenced by the environment
  • Describe the concept of nutritional requirements and essential nutrients
  • Account for feed intake and growth in fish including determining factors
  • Create production / growth models for fish (SDG 12, 14)
  • Formulate species-specific diets for fish considering sustainable use of marine and terrestrial resources (SDG 2, 14, 15)
  • Evaluate the performance of diets for fish (SDG 2, 14)

Course Content

The course covers fundamental concepts in fish nutrition and bioenergetics in aquaculture. We begin with the anatomy and morphology of the digestive system, and the information on dietary preferences that can be inferred. The course covers the macronutrients, examining the different amino acids and fatty acids, essential and non-essential nutrients, and their roles in fish nutrition. Nutritional requirements and essential nutrients are covered from a feed manufacture perspective, including considerations in the selection of raw materials, and the possibilities and limitations for substitution with alternative ingredients. We will examine feed intake, appetite, and digestive processes in fish, in addition to their energy use, and the substrates that are used to provide energy to the fish. Students will formulate a theoretical experimental diet for a species of their choice and benchmark its performance using established assessment methods. The diet will be used in a model for production of fish in aquaculture.

Teaching Method

Lectures, exercises, problem solving, student presentations and written assignment.



This course provides students with competences relevant to UN SDGs, particularly in achieving food security and promoting sustainable aquaculture (SDG2), sustainable consumption and production (SDG12), conserve and sustainably use marine resources (SDG14), and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems (SDG15).

See course in the course database.





13 weeks




DTU Hirtshals Campus

Course code 25321
Course type Candidate

7.500,00 DKK