Leo Nankervis PhD, BSc specializes in the application of physiology to achieve commercially applicable feed developments. Having worked for over a decade in commercial R&D, Dr Nankervis has delivered world-leading research developments in areas including fish meal reduction for salmonids and marine fish, transfer feeds, high performance feeds for fish and prawns, effluent reduction and feeds for recirculation systems. Having lead a large commercial research team in Norway with global networks, Dr Nankervis has comprehensive experience across nutrition, feed production and implementation in the aquafeeds sector. His commercial experience extends beyond research, into quality, formulation and sustainability in the aquaculture sector.

Research interests include using physiology to solve commercially relevant production bottlenecks, raw materials for aquafeeds, nutrient requirements, digestive processes in aquatic organisms, taste and palatability.

  • AQ3002: Aquaculture: Feeds and Nutrition (Level 3; TSV)
  • AQ3008: Aquaculture: Systems Design (Level 3; TSV)
  • AQ5002: Aquaculture: Feeds and Nutrition (Level 5; TSV)
  • AQ5008: Aquaculture: Systems Design (Level 5; TSV)
Research Disciplines
Socio-Economic Objectives

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Journal Articles
Current Funding

Current and recent Research Funding to JCU is shown by funding source and project.

ACIAR - Contract Research

Grouper nutrition review

Indicative Funding
A new ACIAR Concept Note is in preparation for the continuation of ACIAR investment in hybrid grouper aquaculture in Vietnam (FIS/2020/106). In parallel with the development of the Concept Note that will include a high level approach to nutrition research, a desk-top review of existing research is needed to prepare a targeted and practical research focus for the grow-out nutrition component of the project. The frequency of publication of peer-reviewed articles in grouper nutrition is ever increasing and understanding the current status of research is critical in order to maximise ACIAR investment in this area. The review will inform the detail of the experimental approach in the next ACIAR project, which needs to be planned in advance of the project start to maximise outcomes (possible start in July 2021). In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has prevented further scoping travel to Vietnam in the short-term which will necessitate careful remote planning with proposed research partners to identify the most appropriate research systems and resource requirements in Vietnam and Australia for this research component (to be considered in time for resource requirements to be included in the Concept Note submitted in June 2019).
Leo Nankervis and Jennifer Blair (College of Science & Engineering)
Aquaculture; Vietnam; Grouper (Epinephelus sp); Marine Fish Hatcheries; Fish Nutrition; Developing Economies

Tarac Technologies Pty Ltd - Contract Research

Acti-meal dose-response for abalone.

Indicative Funding
Tarac international wish to evaluate their grape marc commercially marketed as `Acti-Meal?. This has shown positive effects on growth for greenlip abalone. Marketing this product needs further validation and examination of mode-of-action, which we hope to elaborate with this project. This research is expected to lead on to further contracts with Tarac, including abalone and prawn nutrition.
Leo Nankervis (College of Science & Engineering)
Fish Nutrition; Consultancy; Commercial Feeds

ACIAR - Contract Research

ACIAR Lobster Nutrition Review

Indicative Funding
A new ACIAR scoping project is being prepared in support of possible new ACIAR investment in tropical rock lobster (Panulirus homarus and Panulirus ornatus) aquaculture in Indonesia. A thorough review of literature is proposed in order to prepare for the nutrition and feeds development component of the project, ensuring that we apply the learnings from previous projects and current scientific literature. The review will inform the detail of the experimental approach in a proposed new ACIAR project, which will benefit from advanced planning prior to the project start to maximise outcomes (possible start in July 2021). In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has prevented any scoping travel to Indonesia in the short-term, providing opportunity to complete a review and facilitating best use of resources once the project starts.
Leo Nankervis and Clive Jones (College of Science & Engineering)
Aquaculture; Indonesia; Lobster (Panulirus sp); Developing Economies; Crustacean nutrition; Review

ACIAR - Research Grant

Scoping study for hybrid grouper aquaculture production in Vietnam

Indicative Funding
Travel to Vietnam to meet with R&D collaborators from government and industry to scope the R&D priorities in hybrid grouper aquaculture in Vietnam. For the scoping study ? total 10 days each for J Cobcroft and L Nankervis (2 days for background reading prior to the trip; 2 days travel between home base and Vietnam; 4 days scoping study meetings and information gathering with proposed team members and others in Vietnam; 2 days for writing-up scoping study report). After this scoping study, prepare the ACIAR Concept Proposal for submission by 30 June 2020, full proposal development and review July 2020 -April 2021, for successful proposal contracting by 30 June 2021 and project start 1 July 2021.
Jennifer Blair and Leo Nankervis (College of Science & Engineering)
Aquaculture; Grouper; Fish nutrition; Vietnam; Marine fish hatcheries; Developing economies

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