Over 1700 tons of fish farming production during 2021

fish farming
fish farming

Muscat: Fish production from fish farming projects in the Sultanate of Oman of the two types of integrated fish farming and commercial fish farming projects reached 1,703 tons during the past year, the most important of which are Indian white shrimp, tilapia fish and European cofferfish.

Dr. Issa bin Muhammad Al-Farsi, Director of the Fish Farming Development Department at the Ministry of Agricultural and Fisheries Wealth and Water Resources, explained that the integrated fish farming projects focus on the integration between agricultural activity and fish farming; With the aim of optimizing the use of land and water resources in an activity with food production that contributes to achieving food security.

He said: Last year, production reached 353 tons, with a total value of 529 thousand Omani riyals, for 26 integrated farms, including three hatcheries to produce 100,000 tilapia fry per month. To meet the needs of the existing integrated farms and one farm for ornamental fish.

He added: Most of the commercial fish farming projects are carried out in the sea or on land by the sea, and their production last year amounted to 1,350 tons, with a total value estimated at 7 million and 200 thousand Omani riyals.

He stated that the Ministry of Agricultural Wealth, Fisheries and Water Resources seeks to increase the contribution of the fish farming sector to the GDP; To achieve Oman’s 2040 vision through several projects, the most important of which is the cultivation of white-legged shrimp. The first project was launched at a cost of 20 million Omani riyals in the Wilayat of Jalan Bani Bu Hassan during this year, and the production capacity of this project is expected to reach 4,600 tons per year by 2023. The establishment of an abalone production project in the Wilayat of Mirbat, at a cost of 10 million Omani riyals, to produce 600 tons annually.

He pointed out that there are new projects for farming through floating sea cages; For the production of koffer, fish, sall, tuna, salmon and other types, in addition to the cultivation of seaweed. The investment cost of all commercial fish farming projects that have a license is approximately 138 million Omani riyals.

He reported that the commercial production of fish farming in the Sultanate of Oman began in 2003, with a production quantity of 352 tons of Indian white shrimp. Then, production fluctuated for years, dropping to 86 tons in 2007; After that, commercial aquaculture stopped for several years, then production resumed in 2014 with the production of tilapia. In 2018, the first commercial production of European koffer fish began in the Wilayat of Quriyat, which operates in floating cages, with an initial production capacity of 350 tons, to reach the end of last year, 1350 tons.

The most important fish that was farmed and produced was the European koffer fish, also known as the golden koffer, the commercial production of which started in 2018 with a quantity of 350 tons, then doubled to 1060 tons in 2020 with a value of 1.2 million Omani riyals, part of which is marketed locally, and another part is exported to Foreign markets, especially regional ones.

The Indian white shrimp, which belongs to the crustacean class, spreads from the western Indian Ocean to the southeast of Africa, preferring to live in mud or sandy mud at depths of 2-90 meters, and its growth reaches 228 mm, and its life period is 36 months, and there are commercially caught in the state of Mahout, as this species constitutes 90 percent of shrimp production, and the most famous countries that farm this type are Saudi Arabia, Iran and India.

As for tilapia, it is native to Africa, and spread in most tropical regions, and has the ability to benefit from natural food; It is of a vegetarian nature in nutrition, and is characterized by the quality and taste of white meat, resistance to diseases, ease of reproduction, and does not require high skill in its propagation; It adapts to a wide range of environmental conditions, grows and reproduces under salinity conditions from 1 to 10 mg / liter, and can also be raised in desert areas.

The tilapia breeding season begins from March until the end of September, about 8 months, to obtain a weight of 300-500 grams, at a rate of 2-3 fish per kilogram. The fish can be kept inside the ponds during the winter period to obtain higher weights, provided that the appropriate depths are provided. So as not to be exposed to hypothermia.

It is noteworthy that these types of fish are marketed locally within the Sultanate of Oman and externally according to supply and demand.

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