‘The method is very cost-effective and lucrative’
The Fisheries Department, in a bid to promote inland fisheries in a scientific method, has successfully undertaken the fish cage culture in the backwaters of the Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS).
Along with financial assistance from the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY), the department has developed an easy-to-follow method in open water aquaculture near Meenakshipur in the backwaters of the Krishnaraja Sagar.
For the first time in the State, the department had stocked fish seeds in cages that were attached to the rafts floating in the waters of a reservoir, P. Nagaraj, Assistant Director of Fisheries, told The Hindu here on Tuesday.
The cage-based fish culture, rearing of fish in floating cages, in reservoirs/water bodies is done in various States and countries. However, this is the first time in Karnataka that the method was taken up, he said.
“The method is cost-effective and increases inland fish production substantially,” Mr. Nagaraj said.
The department has stocked “Pangessius”, a new breed, fish seeds in cages floating in KRS. In all, 24 compartments were anchored and kept in the backwaters, he said.
“The pilot project was inaugurated in March and the department has started getting yields. We are expecting 100 metric tonnes of yield by the end of September,” the officer said. The department has invested Rs. 80 lakh as initial capital and Rs. 50 lakh as operational investment.
Anyone can rear fishes in floating cages. But, it needs a minimum investment of Rs. 5 lakh. “The department is seriously contemplating extending the project to other reservoirs in the State,” the officer said.
On Tuesday, the department had organised a field visit and demonstration for scientists and entrepreneurs at Meenakshipur. Around 100 people from different parts of the State attended it.