Have you ever imagined building your dream home or buying that new model V8 for a car? Well that is a great way to kick off.
For your vision to come true you need the strongest foundation and not using air as your foundation. (Building castles in the air).
Luckily for you the only foundation required to build a successful fish farm are good fingerlings.
Fish fingerlings like your children need a good environment to grow as desired.
You need to grow your own parent flock in order to have control on your production needs.
Fingerlings for the first two days obtain food from their embryo.
Maintain high standards of production and maintenance of the parent flock.
To avoid post hatching losses dip the fingerlings in water with sufficient oxygen supply as soon as you can.
Eggs normally hatch after a period of 3 days.
Pay close attention to ensure the survival of the eggs.
After 3 days the food from the embryo is used up and you should provide feed with high nutrient value to ensure the young fish get food rich in nutrients.
Another thing not to miss in their feed is their feed should be rich in hormones.
When fish are born they luck sex and the hormones you provide will go a long way in helping their maturity and offspring development.
This in one of the most profitable ventures in agribusiness.
Today I will guide you through the steps of venturing into profitable fish farming venture.
Fish farming is divided into two major parts. Fresh water farming and salty water farming.
Most farmers in East Africa are involved in fresh water farming.
The two main types of fish kept are Tilapia and cat fish.
This is one of the fastest growing sectors in food production globally.
Cat fish has different names depending on the location of consumption.
Cat fish originated from North America
This type of fish grows very fast and can become very heavy and nutritious when fully grown.
They also reproduce at a very fast rate.
There are several types of fish in both the high seas, oceans and lakes.
Tilapia is found in many countries with moderate heat temperatures.
They grow rapidly in ponds.
They feed on leaves and any readily available food produce from the farms or at home.
To avoid losses ensure your feed is good since rotting food can cause health problems to the fish.
Meat from both tilapia and cat fish is of high quality and rich in taste.
For you to succeed you need a good and stable pond so as to deter theft and birds of prey.
The pond should be large enough with clean air, water, and easy to clean.
It should also be easy to fill with clean fresh water and easy to empty the dirty water.
Before introducing the fish in the pond clean up and add clean water so that the fish have a conducive environment to mature and breed.
Most areas are good for fish farming though before you start you need to know a few basics for example type of soil and the source of water and food.
It is also profitable to talk to an expert in the agribusiness filed you wish to venture into and that is no different to fish farming.
The size of your dam should not be less than 1.5m and filed with clean water not less than 1 meter of the dams height.
This ensures the fish grow fast and it’s a good level for them to grow in.
The size of the dam is determined by your needs as the farmer and your financial capability.
Big dams are good for fast maturity and livelihood of the fish.
Good maintenance of fish is important as diseases can also affect fish.
Luckily there are no major diseases reported in the field of fish farming at the moment.
The main disease that affects fish is often the fungus disease.
The main cause is feeding fish feed that is already rotting and fungus has grown on.
You also have to ensure that the water in the pond is clean at all time.
Dirty water can also be a cause of the fungus disease.
The main way to know if your fish is infected with the fungal disease is you will notice white cotton like spots on the fish.
To keep the water clean you have to drain the pond and fill it up with clean water.
You can direct the water into your farms since it is rich in nutritional value and is a quality fertilizer to plants.
Like anything under the sun, fish farming has a lot of benefits but comes with its share of challenges.
The major challenges are as follows:-
- Sources of water (ensure there is a constant supply of water)
Factors to consider
Don’t get into fish farming because your neighbor is earning from it.
Don’t be part of the “me too” movement it might not end well in your favor.
Get into farming because you are passionate and in it for the long run not just the money to be made.
I have included some factors that you have to keep in mind during your planning schedule.
- Types of fish that is marketable
- Size and weight of fish
- Best harvesting time
- Best time to sell
- Market prices
- Soil type
Below are estimated costs for starting out in fish farming.
The costs may vary from places to places depending on where you source your products.
The estimated costs are for 1500 fish.
Pond construction – 200,000
Expert consultation 1,600
No of fish 1500
Time frame 6-10 months