Catfish Farming Begins in Mandalay Region

2 December 2014, at 12:00am

MYANMAR - After extensive damage from industrial runoff, ponds in the Mandalay region have been cleaned up and improved and catfish farming has been started.

Ministry of Livestock, Fisheries and Rural Development Deputy Director General, U Tun Wai, said it is important that Myanmar works on agricultural production as well as protecting the environment, reports MyanmarTimes.

“Fish stocks are being threatened and we need to create fish farms,” he said. “That is why it is important to breed fish with improved techniques.”

The fish farms at Nat Yay Kan were once used primarily for carp, but some of the ponds have now switched to a variety of catfish (Pangiasius suchi) that has not been farmed in Myanmar before.

The ponds have been improved by more than doubling the depth from about four feet to between 10 and 15 feet each, which allows for 7500 nursery fish per acre from a previous 3000, according to Ministry Director U Myo Aung.

As farms had previously been polluted from a nearby industrial zone, the ministry has begun piping in water from a clean source about two miles (3.2 kilometres) away.

All these changes together have the potential to increase production at the site by five or 10 times, he said.

“We expect to see a dramatic increase in the next year or two,” said U Myo Aung.