Baba Yara Stadium is now ready for CAN 2008.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Ministry concludes tilapia pond feeding trials

The Ministry of Fisheries has successfully concluded a 10month pond feeding trials with all male tilapia at the Aquaculture Adaptive Trials Centre at Nkawie in the Ashanti region, and has subsequently identified pelletized feed as most suitable for commercial aquaculture production.
The objective of the trial was to demonstrate tilapia growth and economic performance from fingerling to market stages.
The all male tilapia exhibited excellent growth from five grammes to an average of 500 grammes over the 10month period when they were fed on Raanan pelletized fish feed imported from Israel by Dizengoff Ghana Limited.
The feed maintained good water quality, and no pond water flushing was required. Additionally the fish growth with the feed yielded a high economic return in the trial.
A total of 4400 fingerlings were stocked in the pond which was equipped with stand-by aeration at the latter stages of the trials.
At a field demonstration on the production of the all male tilapia using the pelletized feed at Nkawie last week, Mr Emmanuel Nii Aryee, Ashanti Regional Director of the Ministry of Fisheries said the move was a major success in the Ministry’s quest in promoting aquaculture.
This is because, hitherto, most fish farmers were not feeding their stock very well with the right feed thus the produce did not gain the weight they were supposed to before harvest.
Additionally, many of them mixed the males and females together which was also not good for commercial fish production, he said.
The male tilapia is noted for growing faster than the female and that it could attain the weight of about 750 grammes within seven months, for harvesting when fed well. Hence it is profitable to use male fingerlings instead of female fingerlings in fish farming.
The Ministry of Fisheries thus entered into an agreement with Luye Fisheries in China for assistance in the production of male tilapia fingerlings for distribution to fish farmers in Ghana.
The move was to help make high yielding fingerlings always available to fish farmers so as to serve as a boost to aquaculture in the country.
Consequently, the Ministry allocated the Aquaculture Adaptive Trials Centre at Nkawie in the Atwima District of Ashanti to be used as a pilot station for the development of what they termed, the Super Male Tilapia in the country.
Speaking at the field demonstration, the Regional Director of Fisheries said the Ministry sees pond fishing as being very good economically and thus has been promoting aquaculture on a more serious note in the last three years.
He said after the Ministry adopted the all male production method, there was also the need to identify a suitable feed so as to be able to achieve the needed results.
Mr Aryee said the Ministry decided to go for the Raanan feed because that one could float on the surface of the water making it easy to monitor how the stock was consuming the feed.
He said he was aware that GAFCO as well as Agricare have also started producing pelletized feeds and that GAFCO for instance was still in the process of trying to come out with brands that could float on the surface of water.
He said the brands of the other pelletized feeds that does not stay at the surface but sinks to the under of the water was equally good but said the floating ones were more preferable since it allows the farmer to monitor the feeding rate of the stock.
He said his outfit has assigned the Tano Odumase fish pond to produce high yielding all male fingerlings for supply to fish farmers in the Ashanti region so as to serve as a boost to aquaculture.
He said Ashanti was the leading region in pond fish farming.
Adding, he said as part of efforts to boost aquaculture, the ministry has introduced an input credit scheme where fingerlings are supplied to selected farmers as well as assisted in the construction of ponds.
Touching on the results of the trials, Mr Aryee said the exercise had thought the Ministry a lot of lessons which it could impart to fish farmers.
For instance, he said the ministry stocked a total of 4400 fingerlings in the pond which was too small for the stock and also did not mount the stand-by aeration on time.
Again he said the fingerlings were stocked in November and so when the harmattan started in January, the fishes did not eat much during that period so that also affected their growth.
Mr Aryee said lessons learnt from the trials would go a long way to assist fish farmer adding that the average weight could go beyond 500grammes if conditions are favourable.

No comments: