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Cobia to be Bred for Commercial Production

Breeding & genetics Technology & equipment Hatcheries +4 more

INDIA - In six months, researchers hope to give India's marine aquaculture export a leg-up by developing a technology to breed the Cobia (Rachycentron canadum), a brackish water fish, in marine cages on offshore sites. When it happens, it will be a first in India.

Animal husbandry, dairying and fisheries department secretary C Muthukumaraswamy says, "India can use this opportunity to standardise the breeding protocol to produce Cobia seeds and farming methods." According to TheTimesOfIndia, experts in the field say that breeding Cobia for commercial production can be very profitable because of its growth rate, export potential, white meat, taste and flavour.

Cobia can grow up to 2 m in length and weigh up to 68kg. They can weigh about 1kg after six months, 5-6kg after a year and 8-10kg after two years when bred in a marine cage. Seed production and farming have proved viable in many Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam and Thailand, says TheTimesOfIndia.

The chairman of the consortium advisory committee, National Agricultural Innovation Project Cobia Project, Dr M Sakthivel, says, "So far, only the bass ( a sea or freshwater fish) is being bred for commercial production, and its feed is very expensive (1kg of feed costs Rs 50), whereas the Cobia is a carnivore and eats other fish too. There is thus good potential for the fish to be bred by rural entrepreneurs. It is also tolerant to high temperature and brackishness."