How To Start Small Scale Fish Farming In Nigeria

How To Start Small Scale Fish Farming In Nigeria
No doubt fish farming is one of top home-based agricultural related jobs in Nigeria, Ghana, Mali and other African countries.
The product itself, the fish is highly consumed in different forms, fresh fish, smoked fish, iced fish and many other ways. There are also so many species which you can consider cultivating - catfish, tilapia, sardine and so many of them.
Now, one of the major questions people ask is, "...how much does it cost to start a fish farm in Nigeria?" Well, the fish farming business plan isn't so complicated. So whether you are looking for the profitability of catfish farming in Nigeria, cost of starting a fish farm in Nigeria, fish farming in Nigeria tips or how to start your own fish farm, we will talk about them. We also intend publishing a fish farming in Nigeria pdf and will tell you when it is ready.

About The Fish

The fish is an aquatic animal, which means that it spends all its life in the water. The fish (plural fish when one specie and fishes when more than one specie) form a sister group to the tunicates, and they together forming the olfactores. They have gills, fins and can either be bony or cartilaginous.
They are cold-blooded animals just like the reptiles, and as such can't control their body temperature. They have a very good sense of sight, smell and touch.
There are also two types of fish, and they are the salt water fishes and the fresh water fishes.
Examples of fishes include catfish, sardine, tilapia, sharks, carp, guppy, goldfish, arapaima, salmon and Siasmese fighting fish. There are over 25,000 identified species of fish and we can't list them all.
Fact: The largest of all fishes is the Great Whale Shark!

Basic Uses Of Fish

There are many uses of the fish, and before we talk about farming them, we need to be familiar with these uses.

- As food

If not the most popular, this is one of the most popular uses of food. The fish is a rich source of protein and vitamins like vitamin D and also contain other nutrients such as omega-3 and fatty acids, which are awesome for the brain.
Aside that, the fish is a great replacement for meats, and some individuals have confessed to appreciating it more than beef, pork and mutton.

- As a source of employment

The fish serves as a source of employment to so many people, the fishermen, the retailers, the whole sellers, sardine makers and so many others. Even people who make the canned fish are also benefiting from the amazing gift of nature.

- A source of income

Fish provide employment, so they are a source of income. The famous Ibru family are one of the popular families who run a fishing company. There are so many more and they provide funds to many people, including the domestic fish pond owners.

- Beautification

You can use some fish species like the goldfish to beautify your house. This is also another amazing benefit of the fishes.

- Recreational purposes

You can fish for fun, or as a sports and I must confess it is really amazing. You should give it a trial.

Fish Farming In Nigeria

Fish farming is the raising of fish commercially in a domestic setting. It is normally done in tanks, ponds or other enclosures.
The two most commonly cultivated fish in Nigerian fish farms are the tilapia and catfish, however, carp and salmon are also cultivated in some parts of the country. 

Advantages Of Fish Farming In Nigeria

There are so many advantages of fish farming in Nigeria, and we have talked about them on a previous post. However, we'll outline them there and you can refer to the previous article for more explanatory details.
- Provision of food
- Source of income
- Stable supply on demand
- It is a top consumer's choice
- High source of revenue
- Fish have a steady growth pattern
- They are also easy to maintain

Disadvantages Of Fish Farming

As usual, anything that has an advantage should have a disadvantage, except they are incomplete. We have also treated the disadvantages of fish farming on an earlier post, so would just list them here.
Please refer to that for more.
- Issues with start-up funds and capital
- Diseases
- Might pose some harm to the environment ie contribute to environmental hazards
- Are not so cheap to maintain
- They might also pose some risks to the workers' health.

Requirements For Starting A Fish Farm In Nigeria

There are so many things you need to consider when talking about the requirements, such as cost of constructing fish pond in Nigeria, the best locations to site your fish pond, nearness to market and others.
We will see them:

- Secure a land

This is the most important, or rather one of the most important steps you will take. You need to secure land a bit away from human disturbances and having the right topography.
Depending on your budget, half plot should serve you well.
About which type of land is the best for the fish pond construction, they need to be fertile too to encourage growth of microorganisms which also serve as food.

- Construct your pond(s)

You should need more than one pond, and you will also consider hiring a construction engineer for the specifications.

Cost Of Construction Of The Fish Pond

A normal pond should be 3m x 2.5m by 1.4m and consumes around 210 blocks, a bag of cement for every 30 blocks. 
Calculating, 210 x 10 = 2100 blocks. 
2100/30 = 70 bags of cement needed. 
2000 x 70 = 140,000 Naira
Gravel - 2 trips = 32,000x 2 = 64,00 Naira
Sand - 4 trips = 7,000×4 = 28,000 Naira
Cost of plumbing (inlet and outlet facility) = 100,000 Naira
Cost of labor = 150,000 Naira
The cost of bore hole = 150,000 Naira
Cost of treatment of the pond = 50,000 Naira

- Sink a borehole and install overhead tanks or any other water supply

Except you are constructing it close to a water body, you must put your source of water supply into great consideration. The cost of construction (sinking) of a borehole and the installation of the tanks can be gotten from your engineer, since they vary with location.

- Get your juvenile fish

You can get this from other farms that specialize in supplying them. Make sure to go to the best to get you the best results.

To become a perfect fish farmer, you need to get some training from an already established farmer. The tutorials on the internet will help to an extent, but not as much as a physical tutor.
We wish you the best of your new career!
Before you leave, also check out this post on San Diego whale watching.
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