Fish farming consists of two major subdivisions, which could either be operated separately or as an integrated process. The two subdivisions are the nursery and the grow-out pond operation. The nursery operation is the basis for the grow-out operation and as such it cannot be operated without the nursery.
The nursery involves the inducement of the female fish to lay eggs, which are then fertilized, incubated and hatched fish are know as fries. These fries are then nurtured fro between three and four weeks into fingerlings which is the size suitable for use in the fish grow-out operation. In-between the nursery and grow-out operation is what the purpose of this manual referred to as the primary operation. It involves the nurturing of the three or four weeks within which they could grow into post fingerlings, mini juveniles and juveniles respectively. These can then be nurtured for between four to five month into grow-out or table size fish suitable for sale and consumption. Going in catfish farming involves the following
Step one: planning
Here, one has to determine whether one wants to go into a big or small-scale commercial venture, secondly, the pond system to adopt, Re-circulatory system, earthen pond or concrete/plastic pond or both.
Step two: land
This is very important. One has to acquire at least half plot of land in a suitable location. This means, you must consider good access road, closeness to market and labour. If the land is already available, it is good. Then we apportion it as follows: 1. Location of ponds 2. Location of farm house 3. Location of water supply and lastly, location of drainage facility. The last point is very important, as you don’t drain your water to constitute public
Step Three: Water supply Source
The best water for fish farming is from bore hole. One or two must be sunk to guarantee steady water supply. Overhead tanks for holding water should also be installed. The mechanism of pumping of water must be back up facility. The system must not fail.
Step Four: Pond Construction It is advisable to engage the service of a consultant. The success or failure of this project depends largely on construction of standard ponds that can stand the test of time.