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Mangla Dam Stocked with Fingerlings

PAKISTAN - Mangla dam in the southern Mirpur district of Pakistan has just been stocked with 100,000 fingerlings of different species.

The four to six inch fingerlings of Rohu (Labeo rohita), Mohri (Mrigal), Thaila (Catla catla) and Grass Carp were released in the main pocket of the reservoir, spread over 27,000 hectares, by the fishing contractor under an agreement with the PaK wildlife and fisheries department during the breeding season.

The release was marked by a special ceremony attended by attended by government officials and wildlife and fisheries department’s director Sardar Javaid Ayub, Master Allah Ditta and Ramzan Datt advocate of Anglers Association and other members of the civil society.

In their speeches, the representatives of Anglers Association said they appreciated the stocking, expressing the hope that it would help increase the growth of fish in the reservoir.

They said their association would act as a watchdog to promote the cause of the fisheries department for the conservation of fish and also increase in its growth.

The director underlined the importance of stocking for sustenance of fishery in the long term.

“Unlike natural rivers the reservoirs mostly lack the type of spawning habitat that allows a particular fish species to reproduce. Similarly, changes in the water levels of reservoirs also affects the spawning habitat and in such cases stocking becomes essential for sustenance of fishery in the long-term,” he said.

Ayub said the current annual catch from the Mangla dam was around 900 tonnes and it could be increased up to 1100 tonnes if steps were taken on scientific basis to increase the growth of fish.

He also announced that the department was considering to introduce ‘cage culture’ among the communities living beside Mangla reservoir with the help of the federal government’s Fisheries Development Board.

The cage culture is an aquaculture production system where fish are held in floating net pens. Individual cage units come in all shapes and sizes and could be tailored to suit individual farmer’s needs. Cage units can be purchased through commercial outlets, but can also be made from readily available construction materials such as polypipe, wood or/and steel and can be used in both freshwater and marine environments.