How to start fish farming in Kenya? This question is essential for fish farmer of Kenya. many fishermen have been pushed out of their profession because of foreign competition. This causes low income, less food security, and insecurity to the families in Kenya. this is a challenge that needs to be addressed for Kenya’s economy to grow and thrive.
Kenyan Fish farming has a lot of potentials in it especially because there is a high demand for fish among the population in Kenya. A Kenyan farming family has turned to fish farming as a means of sustainability. They use the water from the Luhya river to raise tilapia and other edible fish.
Fish farming, which is an emerging industry in Kenya, helps provide food for the country and employment opportunities for those living near rivers and lakes. Kenya’s first commercial fish farm opened last year in Kisii county which is located southeast of Nairobi.
What is fish farming?
Fish farming is to raising fish in a controlled, rectangular pond or tank and harvest the fish for food. Fish can be raised on small farm ponds or in large-scale freshwater farms that are located in the open sea. Commercial fishing has led to overfishing, so fish farming has become a more viable option for fishermen who may find difficulty catching enough seafood if they rely solely on commercial fishing alone.
Fish farming involves several steps and is a lengthy process that can take up to five years to complete. The first step is the creation of a pond or tank. Depending on the size of the tank, it can be made by digging or by building with concrete blocks. The next step is to stock the tank with fish. These fish are usually ready to harvest after six months or so, depending on the species and conditions in which they are raised.
How to start fish farming in Kenya?
Fish are one of the best sources of fresh protein in many parts of the world. With so much demand for food security in Kenya – there are few better options than aquaponics. But before you delve into this green-tech system, it’s important to know what it entails and some potential disadvantages.
To start this business you need to first have experience in fish farming. Second, you need to have a website with many pictures of your products so people can see what it is supposed to look like. Third, you need a place to keep the fish after they are grown. fourth, you will need a place where the public can come and buy them.
Fifth, someone will have charge of taking care of them so they won’t die or get sick. and sixth you need to know that starting a business like this can be very profitable if you take the time and effort to learn how to do it. This is because many people use fish as a food source and will be willing to pay you for your fish.
Fish farming in Kenya is a promising business venture. The government of Kenya is implementing policies that support the development of fish farming as an industry. Kenyan fish farming has a lot of potentials in it especially because there is a high demand for fish among the population in Kenya.
Many farmers prefer to use fish ponds for fish farming because of the way these ponds are designed. After sowing the seeds, farmers tend to take out any unripe or small seedlings with carefully installed nets. This will make sure that the fish can grow undisturbed without being disturbed by other small seedlings. The nets must be cleaned every day as it may result in poor growth due to poor nutrition per unit area.
The nets should be of the very best quality and the color shouldn’t be faded. Fishing nets are available in different sizes, depending on the fish farm size, so farmers can find the right set of nets. The fishnet must be very good in quality because it is an important tool that will help in keeping the fish alive. Fish farming requires some specialized gear for cultivation, namely: a drill for fishing and a rake for dredging which can also serve as a water level device.
Farming start season
There are different seasons when you can start your fish farming. The best time to start is February, March, and April. It is best because it is a time when the soil is workable, the ponds can be easily prepared for sowing and release of fingerlings. You can also start growing the fish during this time as well because it will be easier for them to feed on the growing plants.
About one month before you intend to harvest, reduce feeding and increase aeration so that water quality will not be affected. In April and May, you can start harvesting the fish. As for the quantity of fish, you can decide on your own because there are places that allow for different numbers of fish with different sizes.
Harvesting season (September – December) is a good time to harvest and take care of other things like selling the fish or transporting them to market. During this season, you need to water just once a week. Aeration will be needed every day as it will help in keeping the pond clean and good-looking.
Fish feed is a very important issue especially when it comes to high-value fish species. This is because fish will use the feed to grow and become larger more quickly. The fish that are grown will also require more nutrients over their lifetime as they grow bigger, so farmers must maintain the quality of their fish feed.
Fish feed is not just one type of feed, but there are different types of nutrients in it. These can be purchased from any retail shop. These are commonly used by farmers and the purchasing of these can be done online or offline. Many online retailers are offering a variety of fish feeds and farmers can buy them from them. Some farmers prefer to buy these from other farmers.
Other care and management
If the fish is being raised in a fish farm, farmers should take care of the pond to ensure that it is well maintained and in good condition. Pond management is not just about feeding the fish with good quality feed and maintaining their water quality. Fisheries can be managed in many ways such as weeding, cleaning, and checking the water environment.
The farmers can also check the daily stocking rates of different age groups of fish, which will determine whether they are giving enough stock or not. There are many other care and management techniques that the farmers can make use of to get better output. Here are some of them;
Most fish species that are used for fish farming purposes, do not require special care in terms of their food. Fish farmers can grow these species on a diet that they find to be appropriate. It is important to know what the best food is for a particular species so that one can decide on whether or not there is a market for it.
The products must be marketed before the fish can be sold. Marketing is important because it will determine how successful a person’s fish farm business venture will turn out to be. For a fish farmer to run a successful fish farm business, he must have a good understanding of the local, national and international market conditions that exist in the area where he lives.
Fish farming challenges in Kenya
Fish farming has a lot of potentials it especially because there is a high demand for fish among the population in Kenya. Yet there are few challenges to fish farming in Kenya. One of the major challenges is the unavailability of enough water to maintain the fish farm.
Another challenge is the lack of skills, knowledge, and experience that are required for the successful operation and management of the fish farm. Most of the farmers in Kenya cultivate fish with low yield and also they don’t engage any professional to manage the farm properly as they believe it is not important as others are investing a lot of money in fishing and farming.
Best 10+ benefits of fish farming in Kenya
1. Fish farming provides income for local people.
2. Fish farming help communities to develop fish production and marketing system locally.
3. It is a good source of livelihood and food supplements are also derived from fish farming.
4. Many fish species can be produced in Kenya which helps in food security.
5. The main purpose is to supply valuable protein sources to supplement the human diet and feed livestock such as poultry/livestock, bees, cattle, etc.
6. It is a cheap source of protein alternative for farmers.
7. Fish farming can be practiced in both rural and urban areas.
8. Fish farming has the potential to provide income, food, employment, and market linkages to the most vulnerable households such as women, youth, and the poor.
9. Fish farming helps in the reduction of poverty.
10. Fish farming can be done on a small scale or large scale depending on the capital available.
11. It helps people in developing countries to establish their food economy.
12. It can be done in both rural and urban areas.
13. Fish farming is a good way of producing high-protein food for human consumption.
14. Fish can be grown throughout the year, unlike other animals.
How to start fish farming in Kenya is all about fish farming, By selecting the proper size for your fish pond, you can purchase a bio-filter from your local fish pond supplier. This will help in keeping your water clean and having a healthy environment. Fish farming is a highly profitable business, but it requires a lot of hard work and perseverance so that you will be successful in this type of business.