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close this bookWorkshop to Produce an Information Kit on Farmer-proven. Integrated Agriculture-aquaculture Technologies (IIRR, 1992, 119 p.)
close this folderFish management and feeding
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View the documentPlant sources of feed for fish

Plant sources of feed for fish


In India, TRAPA (Trapa bispinossa) and makhana (Euryale ferox) are two seasonal, aquatic cash crops which are grown extsosively In Madhya Pradesh and Bihar, respectively. While the environment is not congenial tar Indian carps, common carp goes well with trapa and airbreathing fishes with makhana tagged en the Input requirements for a 0.4 ha pond, the procedures to be adapted en given below:

Trapa bispinosa

1. Transplant trapa seedlings In May/June in a perennial pond. These plants make use of the

- available organic matter for their growth.

2. Stock 800 (50 g) common carp fingerings In September- October.

3. Trapa l fruits ripen in winter and are harvested from November to January. Aproduction of 3 4 tons of fruits is obtained.

4. Fish are harvests in April/May when 750-1000 g tish are available. A total of 400-500 kg fish are harvested

Euryale Ferox

1. The seeds sprout in February and the leaves cover the pond fully by May/June.

2. The plants start fruiting by August and burst in October, scattering the seeds at the pond bottom which are collected by scanning the bottom mud.

3. Stock 1,200 (8-10 g) air-breathing fishes (Clarlas batrachus) in November and harvest by April, when about 500 kg of fish can be obtained.

Napier grass.

Besides aquatic vegetation' such ' as Hydrilla, Ottella, Potamogeton, etc., green grass has a great role in feeding grass carp. Hybrid rapier, once sown on pond bank, can be cropped continuously for five years, needing little irrigation during summer. A new system utilizing aquatic vegetation/green grass alone for fish production gives high yields at very low costs. It is labor-intensive and highly suitable for small, shallow ponds (0.06 - 0.15 ha). Based on input requirements for a 0.1 ha pond, the methods to be followed'are given below:

1. Prepare the pond in May/June using urea-bleaching powder method or by draining, It a source of water for filling the pond is available.

Prepare the pond in May/June

2. Seven to ten days later, stock the pond with 200 (5060 9) grass carp. Feed them to satiation (system of feeding ad libitum: fish 'are satiated when they have stopped feeding and there are still some feed material' left lying about) with Hydrilla.- Within about a week, the pond is also stocked with 40 each of catla, rohu, mrigal, silver carp and common carp (5-8 g). Grass carp is gradually - weaned from Hydrilla to napier grass.

3. Feeding is done regularly to satiation.

Feeding is done regularly

4. Silver carp, catla and common carp will be the first to attain a weight of 1 kg each. From the fifth or sixth month onward, these are harvested one after another. Replenish the harvested fish with an equal number of fingerlings.

5.Hybrid napier is planted at 1 root slip/sq m and manured with 2.5 t farmyard manure/1000 sq m.

Irrigation is done at 10-15 day intervals. The grass is cut after 75 days, followed by 45-day intervals. About 10 cuts can be taken from each plant. A production of 12-15 t napier from 1000 sq m is taken. About 2000 sq m land area will produce enough napier to feed the fish in a 0.1 ha pond. This means that to provide sufficient grass to feed the fish, twice the pond area is needed for growing rapier.

6. About 400 kg of fish can be harvested from the pond in the course of one full year.


· Utilization of rapier/weeds for fish production at no cost.
· Utilization of pond resource for fish production in trapa/makhana ponds.
· Additional income and employment generation.


· Non-availability of large-eked grass carp and their transport
· As large quantities of grass Is required, napier/weed integration is possible in small ponds only.

Prepared by: S.D. TRIPATHI & B.K. SHARMA