Workshop on Asian Seabass Farming in Pond Culture System

23rd February, 2013, Chennai

Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR inaugurated the Workshop on Asian seabass (Lates calcarifer) farming in pond culture system at Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA).  In his inaugural address, he appreciated the achievements made in Asian seabass farming through this NFDB project using artificial feed. While releasing the brochures on seabass farming in nine different regional   languages, he appreciated the efforts of the Institute for making awareness among the public in the maritime states of the country through the extension material in vernacular medium. He also strongly suggested the entrepreneurs and farmers to take up Asian seabass farming, and complemented the efforts of CIBA scientists in transferring the technology to public, including the tribal woman Self Help Groups of Tamil Nadu and Gujarat as an additional livelihood option.

 Dr. A.R.T. Arasu, Head Finfish Culture Division and Principal Investigator of the project explained the progress made on the technologies of Asian seabass farming ever since the first breakthrough on seed production was made at CIBA.

Dr R Prabakaran, the Vice Chancellor of the Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS),   briefly mentioned the status of fisheries and expressed that the future fisheries development is possible only through aquaculture.

Dr. M. Sakthivel, President of the Aquaculture Foundation of India, in his felicitation address, complemented the scientists of CIBA for developing a comprehensive technology for Asian seabass farming which could be adopted to any scale by the farmers and entrepreneurs.

Dr Paul Pandian, the Executive Director (Technical), NFDB complemented CIBA for taking up a difficult task of conducting demonstration in seven locations of six coastal states successfully and expressed his happiness over the encouraging results drawn from this project.

Dr. A. G. Ponniah, Director, CIBA welcomed the delegates for the workshop and expressed his gratitude to NFDB for the funding support to take up such project.

Asian seabass (Bhetki) is one of the important candidate species for diversification in coastal and brackishwater aquaculture, as it is a hardy fish and can be farmed in ponds, cages or pens, in fresh or brackish or in marine water eco systems.  CIBA has developed comprehensive technologies for seed production and feed formulation for seabass culture.  To popularise seabass farming, the techno-economic viability of nursery rearing, pre-grow out and grow out culture of the fish were demonstrated by conducting field trials in farmers’ ponds in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Odisha and West Bengal. The demonstration programme was started in February 2009 with the funding support from National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), Hyderabad and the project will be completed by 31st March 2013.

The Workshop was attended by more than 250 stakeholders including farmers from West Bengal, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra and many entrepreneurs, experts and academicians.

(Source: CIBA, Chennai)