Tilapia fish farming in Kenya
Tilapia has taken an important role in fish farming. Almost all types of people like tilapia recipes like baked tilapia to eat and there is no man who does not like tilapia. The weather and environment of our Asian countries are very favorable for tilapia fish farming. Tilapia is one of the very testy and fast-growing fish species, so it has a great demand for fish farmers and consumers.
It has made a revolution in the field of fish farming. By farming the tilapia fish in modern ways using up to date technology and techniques, the desired income can be made within a very short time. Tilapia fish farming is also a suitable way of earnings for unemployed people. Due to the high rate and demand for tilapia in local and foreign markets, the farmers are being more interested in this fish farming. The efficiency of taking a natural feed, interests in supplementary feed, surviving in adverse natural conditions and for disease resistance power of tilapia the popularity of it is increasing to the farmer.
As well as the demand for tilapia fish is increasing in the international market day by day. Tilapia fish can survive in 12-40 degrees centigrade temperature and grows well in 16-35 degrees centigrade temperature. Tilapia can be produced twice a year. If modern farming methods and technology can be used in tilapia fish farming, then it would generate more income. And it has a bright chance to contribute to our economy.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Farming Method
Well, management is very important to get the highest benefit from tilapia fish farming. Tilapia grows rapidly. The female tilapia can produce minnow for numerous times in a year. So different sized tilapia can be seen in the pond. As a result of it, the farmers do not get the desired product.
Naturally, the growth rate of male tilapia is more than female. The farmer can cultivate only the male tilapia which will generate more production. This type of cultivation is called mono-sex tilapia fish farming. These types of tilapia consume supplementary feed and can survive in adverse natural conditions even it can be cultivated in high density. Select a pond with a depth of 1.5-4 feet for tilapia farming. Bush and the unnecessary thing must have to remove from the pond, it will ensure the entrance and availability of sunlight inside the pond. Proper pond management helps better production.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Nursing Pond
The minnow of tilapia fish should keep in a nursing pond after bringing them from tilapia hatchery. Before keeping the minnow to the pond you have to be sure about the condition of the pond. First of all make the pond dry and apply rotenone medicine to remove unwanted and cannibalistic fish insects and animals. After that, apply 100 kg lime, 500-700 kg dung, 10-15 g nitrogen, 5-7 g TSP and 2 g MOP per acres. Keep a net around the pond to prevent the fish from predators like frogs and snakes. After 5-7 days of applying fertilizer, stock 21-28 day old minnow in the pond. Serve 10-15% feed to the fish according to the weight of the minnow. After 40-60 days of caring and nursing move them to another pond.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Breeding:
The breeding process of tilapia fish is not so difficult and the setup of the breeding process is very simple. For the breeding purpose, the brood-stocks can be placed in a small-sized tank and after that transfer the fry to a larger tank or pond for further farming. It is very difficult to identify male or female tilapia fish when they are very young. Which is a very big problem for commercial tilapia fish farming. For this reason, the large commercial tilapia producers use hormones or genetically chosen fish to produce only male tilapia for profitable farming.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Feeding
Tilapia is generally an omnivorous fish species. They generally consume everything including algae and various types of aquatic plants. For small or large scale commercial tilapia fish farming the producers can use commercial tilapia fish feed which is available to the nearest market. Organic fish feeds are also available for tilapia fish and homemade feed can also be used. Commercial feeds are very healthy and effective for the fish and it provides the highest growth.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Control parasites, diseases, and predators
Fishpond should be kept clean to control parasites and diseases. Seek help from an aquaculture professional on the right medication to use to treat sick tilapia. To prevent predators from accessing the pond, use a wire net fence around and over it, and around the inlet and outlet pipes. Keep the system clean to keep the water fresh and reduce incidences of disease.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Management
First of all, remove different types of unwanted and cannibalistic fish from the pond by using a net or applying rotenone or other medicine. Apply dung and compost fertilizer every week for producing natural feed in the pond. In accordance with natural feed serve them sufficient supplementary fish feed. If you provide supplementary feed according to the demand of fish then there is no necessity of providing the natural feed. When the weight of fish will be more than 100 g, then it will be better if you change the water of the pond at a rate of 5% daily. When the average weight of tilapia would 300-500 g then it will be suitable for sale. Collect all the fish and stock again.
Nowadays the market of tilapia is speeding worldwide. Our environment and weather are very suitable for tilapia fish farming. It takes low time in farming and gives a great income within a short time. As the demand and price are high so the farmers are becoming more interested in tilapia fish farming. Tilapia farming can meet up our demand for protein and make our economy strong. Grow out strategies for tilapia range from the simple to the very complex. Relatively simple tilapia farming strategies are characterized by little control over water quality and food supply and by low fish farm yields. As greater control over water quality and fish, nutrition is imposed and fish stocking levels are increased, the fish yield per unit area increases. Across this wide range of fish farming methods, there is a progression from low to high management intensity.
In traditional pond culture of tilapia, proper environmental conditions are maintained by balancing the inputs of feed with the natural assimilative capacity of the pond environment. The pond’s natural biological productivity serves as both a food source and a biological filter that helps convert fish waste by-products through natural biological processes.
Increasing fish stocking densities places increasing demands on the fish production system. Additional energy inputs in the form of labor, water exchange, aeration, and higher quality fish feeds are all required to sustain fish culture conditions in the intensive system. As pond production intensifies and fish feeding rates increase, supplemental aeration and some water exchange are required to maintain good water quality. For fish stocking densities above 1.5-kg per square meter, aeration is usually required. Eventually, there is an endpoint where the incremental returns on investment are not worth the incrementally higher rated of production relative to the higher costs and higher risks. In other words, increasing the intensity of the fish culture system does not necessarily reflect an increase in profitability.
All tilapia production systems must provide a suitable environment to promote the growth of the aquatic crop. This is true regardless of whether tilapia are grown in ponds, in cages, or in tanks or raceways. Critical environmental parameters that must be properly managed include dissolved oxygen, ammonia, nitrites, and carbon dioxide. Other important parameters to control within the fish production system include nitrates, pH, and alkalinity. To produce tilapia in a cost-effective manner, aquatic production systems must be capable of maintaining all of these water quality variables in a safe range for the entire grow-out period.
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Proper feeding of a nutritionally balanced fish feed is critical to success for any tilapia farming operation. To produce excellent growth rates, tilapia are typically fed moderate to high protein pelleted diets at rates ranging from 1.0% to 30% of their body weight per day depending upon their age and size. Numerous options for holding brood fish, fry, fingerlings, juveniles, sub-adult, and adult tilapias are available to the prospective farmer. The basic options include ponds, tanks or raceways, and cages. Ponds are used in extensive, semi-intensive and intensive tilapia production. Pond culture is by far the most common method being employed on a global scale because it is one of the cheapest methods and also is one of the best.
Ponds are much cheaper to construct and allow tilapia production specialists to stimulate natural productivity more readily. One potential major drawback of pond culture is the greater risk of uncontrolled reproduction, which will occur if the tilapias have not been properly sex-reversed prior to stocking in the grow-out ponds. Tanks or raceways involve considerably greater expense to construct but offer greater control. They are typically used in intensive grow out of tilapias, or in the tilapia hatchery. If it’s done right, cage culture of tilapia can be the least cost method of growing larger tilapia, but tilapia cage culture is limited by the availability of high-quality sites and can be subjected to potentially devastating environmental extremes if not properly accounted for in the site selection and operational plans.
Tilapia fish farming in Kenya – Benefits of Tilapia Fish Farming in Kenya
There are many benefits/advantages of fish farming in Kenya. The most important benefits of fish farming in Kenya are listed below.
- The weather and geographical location of Kenya are very suitable for fish farming businesses and setting up commercial fish farming in Kenya.
- Numerous species of fishes are available which are highly profitable for fish farming in Kenya.
- High demand and price of fish in the market.
- Fish is a great source of food and nutrition. You can earn some extra money by setting up a fish farm along with meeting up your daily family demands.
- Along with rapid population growth sources of employment are decreasing. Commercial fish farming in Kenya can be a great source of employment for those unemployed people.
- The unemployed educated people can also start fish farming. This will create working opportunities and earning livings.
- Commercial fish farming also helps for proper utilizing of water resources of Kenya.
- By using modern fish farming techniques, maximum production is possible. This will make the economy strong and ensure the availability of required nutritious food.
Frequently Asked Questions About Tilapia fish farming in Kenya
How long does a tilapia fish take to mature?
Tilapia fish takes 240 days, or 34 weeks for food-grade tilapia to reach a 16 to 20-ounce harvest size. Food grade tilapia are simply those tilapia that exhibit the fastest rates of growth.
How do you grow tilapia?
A mature tilapia typically consume about 1% of their body weight in feed a day, while fingerlings can consume as much as 7%
How much space do tilapia need?
A flow rate of 6 to 12 gallons/minute is needed to support the oxygen requirement of 100 pounds of tilapia. DO, which should be maintained at 5 mg/liter for good tilapia growth, is the primary limiting factor for intensive tank culture.
How deep should a tilapia pond be?
This size can get you started: 8 feet long, 4 feet wide and 2.5 feet deep. Tilapia farmers can increase or decrease it, considering these two factors, but ensure one mature tilapia has a water space of 1 square feet or 0.5 cubic feet of water. The next thing is to choose the type of fish pond that suits your specific needs.