production and culturen of fish

Fish Production and Culture

Fishing is one of the country's oldest industries and a promising dollar earner. It is a source of livelihood for people who live near the coastal areas. The geographical location and physical attributes of the Philippines make natural fishing ground which includes the sea, marine waters, swamp lands, rivers, and lakes. There are about 2,400 species of fish, mollusks, and other aquatic life found in Philippine waters.

The farming of the sea allows the culture of fish and other aquatic animals and plants, such as seaweed, in controlled environment in the sea. Agar is a seaweed that is planted in coastal areas. It is processed for the use of the food and pharmaceutical industries.

Allied industries that are dependent on fishing include:

I. Fish and seaweed processing
2. Ice plants and cold storage
3. Salt making
4. Net making
5. Boat building


Fish Culture

Fish culture is defined as the art and science of raising fish and other aquatic products under controlled or semi-controlled environments. The culture of fish in a controlled environment is undertaken in cages and aquariums. Fish culture in a semi-controlled environment, on the other hand, is undertaken in open water as in the culture of oysters, mussels, and seaweeds.

The culture of fish is an important contribution to Filipino food production. Fish can be raised in ponds, giving more high-quality protein per area of production compared to livestock.
While there are only five major species of livestock raised commercially, there are about 30 species of fish that can be cultured for food production.

Classification of Fish

Fish live in a variety of habitat. They are present in water of every temperature from the ho tropics to the cold North and South poles. Fish cat a wide variety of food, and they are either herbivore (plant eater) or carnivore (meat eater), Most fish feed on planktons which consist of both microscopic plants and animals. Fish lay thousands, even millions of eggs at a spawning. They grow as long as they live although they grow more slowly as they age.

Fish are classified according to the area where they live:

1. Ground fish live near the bottom of the ocean.
Examples: sea bass, halibut, flounder

2.Pelagic fish stay on the upper layer of the sea.
Examples: herring, shark, mackerel, tuna, swordfish

3. Anadromous fish are borne in freshwater then swim to the sea as adults. They return to the freshwater to lay their eggs.
Example: salmon

4. Freshwater fish
Examples: catfish, carp, tilapia

Major Areas of Fish Culture

Many fish farmers apply polyculture wherein they raise different kinds of fish in one pond. Milkfish (hangus) and prawns (sugpo) are usually cultured together in one pond. Some fish farmers raise tilapia, mudfish, and catfish together in one pond.

Fish culture covers three (3) major phases; fish propagation, fish cultivation, and fish conservation.

1. Fish Propagation
Fish propagation is the natural or artificial method of promoting or enhancing reproduction and survival of fish and other aquatic animals and plants.

2. Fish Cultivation
Fish cultivation simply means the rearing of fish and other aquatic products from a very young stage like fry and fingerlings to marketable sizes. This is done in fresh, brackish, and marine water with the use of Cages or pens.

a. Freshwater Cultivation
The freshwater cultivation of fish is carried out in bodies of water such as lakes, rivers, dams, reservoirs, and paddies. Structures used for this type are fishponds, pens, cages, and aquariums. The species of fish commonly raised under this type are carp, tilapia, catfish, mudfish, and gourami.
Fish culture in cages is a common in Thailand, Indonesia, practice Japan, Vietnam, Norway, and USA.
Raising fish in cages allows intensive production of fish because of reduced
mortality with maximum use of fish food. It is also cheaper than constructing a fishpond.

A fish pen is an artificial enclosure made of bamboo and synthetic materials or netting material for containing fish in the lake. It varies in area ranging from 5 to 50 hectares.

b.Brackish Water Cultivation
This type of fish cultivation is undertaken in tidal area, estuaries, and some the major inland water where there is a combination of fresh and saltwater species cultivated are milkfish, shrimps, crabs, and tilapia. They are usually raised in fishponds.

C. Rice-fish Culture
This is an excellent means of improving the nutrition of rice farmers.
The culture of fishes such as tilapia, catfish, and gourami in rice paddies has been practicedfor centuries in other countries.

d. Fish Farming
A possible alternative way to increase the fish harvest from the sea is by farming.
Farming the water known as mariculture or culture began in China about 4,000 years ago. In monoculture, only a single species of fish is raised. In polyculture, different species of fish are raised in certain area. Aquaculture is labor, capital, and the intensive methods of culturing fish. Hatchery, rearing, and release of seagoing fish such as salmon and steel head trout is called ocean ranching or sea ranching.

3. Fish Conservation
Fish conservation is a form of public concern and maintenance of the various fisheries where fish and other fishery products are derived. The natural habitats of fish like lakes, rivers, mangroves, and swamplands should be protected to ensure that these areas are maintained as breeding places of fish.

Pollution is the dumping of deleterious materials hazardous to fish and other aquatic life and to people's health.

The Red Tide Phenomenon

Red tide occurs all over the world and generally follows a period of hot, windless day when the surface water of the sea becomes unusually warm. It usually occurs during the summer months from March to May. The red discoloration of the water is caused by the growth of red plankton (dinoflagellate) which give off toxin that is poisonous to many species of fish and to people as well.
Red tide also affects the culture of mussels and other seashells.

Different Cultured Fishes

The major fishes cultured in the country are:

1. milk fish
2. tilapia
3. carp
4. catfish
5. mud fish
6. gourami

Milkfish is cultured in brackish water because it can adapt itself to marine and freshwater conditions. The mature fish is called sabalo.

The natural food of milkfish consists of microscopic plants and animals found in the bottom of ponds known as lab-lab, as well as lumut, and feed stuff such as rice, soybean, and bread crumbs.

Tilapia originated from Africa and the Middle East and is also found in many parts of the world. I There are two varieties cultured in the country Mozambique tilapia which is light colored and Nile tilapia or "giant tilapia."

Carp is cultured with tilapia and mudfish in freshwater ponds. It is fed with rice, soybean, fish meal, or breadcrumbs twice a day. The silver carp attain an average weight of 10 kg two years.

There are three species of cultured catfish: native hito, Thailand catfish, and kanduli which is found only in Laguna Lake.
The native catfish is preferred because of its tender flesh.

Mudtish or dalag is a predatory fish that feeds on other fishes.

The gourami is a hardy fish and can be fed with kangkong and sweet potato leaves. The giant gourami can grow to a weight of 2 to 3 kilograms.