State to use innovative floating, caged fish culture for better yield

Huge gap between demand and supply of fish: Minister

State to use innovative floating, caged fish  culture for better yield

The Fisheries department has decided to take up innovative floating and caged fish culture at major reservoirs in the State to ensure adequate supply of fish in the open market, Fisheries Minister Abayachandra Jain said on Thursday.

Speaking to reporters, he said the department has already taken up the caged fish culture at KRS reservoir on an experimental basis.

The main advantage of the innovation is better yield. As the fish will be grown in a cage-like enclosure, loss will be minimal, he added.

About 48 cages measuring 5/6 meters each are being used at KRS reservoir as part of the experiment. The yield is estimated to be about 4,000 tonnes per each cage. The department is growing pangasius variety of fish as they get easily adjusted to artificial conditions, he said.

The minister said the same method will be replicated at Kabini, Harangi, Hemavathi and Narayanapura reservoirs in the coming days. The plan is to involve private sector in caged fish culture as it is a lucrative venture.

The department has also decided to start live fish marketing at outlets located in the vicinity of these reservoirs, he added.

There is a huge gap between demand and supply of fish in major cities, especially Bengaluru. The department will make efforts to ensure adequate supply of quality fish in coming days. Karnataka exported 1.70 lakh metric tonnes of fish worth about Rs 1,200 crore in 2013-14, he said.

The department has decided to allow only fish cooperative societies to take up fish farming in lakes and tanks in the State. Besides, it has been made mandatory that those who catch fish should be given 50 per cent of the catch, he added.

Expansion

Jain said expansion of three fishing harbours in Mangaluru, Malpe and Honnavara has been taken up at a total cost of Rs 120-crore.

The expansion is being jointly done by the State and the Centre on 75:25 cost-sharing basis. The State has proposed to develop Mulki and Hejmadi Kodi harbours on the same lines. But the Centre has said it will bear only 40 per cent of the project cost, he added.

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