Fish Farming Revolution in Pizhala Island Village
A tiny island village in Kerala's scenic backwaters is in the limelight for ushering in a fish farming revolution.
Around 100 farmers took part in as many as 60 cage farming enterprises under the guidance of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) in Pizhala Island in Kadamakkudi Panchayat.
The farmers, including women's groups in Pizhala island near Kochi, yielded a mega harvest of pearl spot, seabass and tilapia in cage culture.
CMFRI official said, "During the harvest done prior to Christmas, the farmers got seabass with an average weight of 3.5 kg and pearl spot weighing 250 grams."
He said CMFRI's Mariculture Division gave training and technical guidance to farmers at various stages, from the stocking period to the harvest, to make the enterprise a grand success.
Dr Imelda Joseph, Head of the Mariculture Division coordinated the cage fish farming in the area.
"The cage farming has been proved less expensive and economically viable," said Dr A Gopalakrishan,CMFRI Director.
"An amount of only Rs 100 is required to produce a kg of pear spot by using cage farming method.But the farmer will get Rs 500 to 600 for a kg of live pearl spot farmed in cages", he said.
Gopalakrishnan said the fish farming revolution in Pizhala Island is a good sign that CMFRI's research output is reaching the common public.
Fish Farming Help to Achieve High Income
At the College of Fisheries, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), a five-day training programme on fish farming was conducted. The programme was attended by unemployed youth, farmers and as well as entrepreneurs belonging to non-farming community from Bathinda, Ferozepur, Ludhiana, Mansa and Jalandhar.
To the trainees, technological inputs for scientific farming of different species such as prawns/shrimps, carps, Azolla, catfish and ornamental fish was provided at the programme.
Lectures were also delivered on on-going promotional schemes of the government for financial assistance to fish farmers, extension/utility services provided by GADVASU and role of media in marketing.
For diversification for farming community, fish farming was a lucrative enterprise. Experts said that, as compared to agriculture and livestock farming systems, fish farming helped achieve higher earnings per unit land holding and required less labour.