Minister of State for Forest, Animal & Sheep Husbandry, Cooperative and Fisheries, Zahoor Ahmad Mir, today called for adopting modern methods in Pisciculture to create new avenues for unemployed youth and increase the income of present fishermen.
The Minister, while inspecting the progress of state of art Cage Fish farming inside Dal lake, stressed the need to speed up the trials so that the new method of fish farming is introduced in the state on a wider scale.
The Minister was informed that the department of fisheries has started trial in cage farming by installing cages at Dal Lake, Manasbal Lake and Ranjit Sagar Dam. The preliminary results have been overwhelming with cages in Dal lake producing 2.5 tonnes of fish last year. This year the production is expected to reach five tonnes. Cage farming involving installing floating cages of 10X18 feet and 10 feet deep inside a waterbody wherein fish are reared. The cages can also be used by fishermen to store fish caught during a lean season. The fish can then be sold at the times of high demand fetching them more income.
The Minister said that the Cage Farming would revolutionize aquaculture in the state. Unemployed youth or fishermen would simply have to install a floating platform inside a waterbody and they will be able to produce upto 10 tonnes of fish every year, he added. He said that it will also decrease pressure on our land and water resources as the cages can be fixed inside Dal, Wular and any other waterbody.
The Minister visited the Harwan Trout Farm and fish feed mill to review its functioning. He was informed that the farm, established in 1904 is India’s oldest Trout farm, has a production of 2-2.5 tonnes of rainbow trout per year. The farm also supplies seed to 14 trout farms established in private sector in the adjoining areas. The farm also has a conventional fish feed mill that supplies high quality fish feed to fish farms in private and government sector.
The Minister, later, inspected the Rainbow Aquarium cum awareness centre at Gagribal. He was informed that the aquarium is visited by around 10,000 tourists and locals every year. There is also a huge rush of students coming on a study tour at the aquarium. He directed the officials to explore modalities to expand the facilities at the aquarium.