How To Start Fish Farming Business In Nigeria

Catfish Farming in Nigeria  -  How to Start!

catfish farming
Catfish Farming in Nigeria  – Because of its unique taste and high nutritional value, catfish delicacies have become increasingly popular in Nigerian homes, restaurants and hotels. In recent times, the demand for it is a lot higher than catfish farmers can supply thereby making catfish farming in Nigeria a profitable investment to launch into. 

Catfish farming is a money spinning venture as you will start generating 100% return of investment.
However, the catfish business requires knowledge, skill, together with time and effort to make it successful (knowledge + skill + time + effort = success). This is because if any of these values is neglected, it is easy to run into losses. The good news is that if you follow the simple catfish farming guidelines mentioned in this article, you will be guaranteed a stable and steady income throughout the year as it is not a seasonal business.

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Catfish farming in Nigeria as a business can be started with as much amount of money as you have. In fact I recommend you start on a small scale and then grow with experience. As time goes by, you will become accustomed to tackling the risks involved in the business. Initial capital is needed for the construction of the pond, for acquiring land and buildings if it is not self owned, labour, licensing and equipment. Running costs includes cost of feeds, getting fingerlings, fuel/electricity.

Also Read: How To Write A Fish Farming Business Plan
Construction of Ponds
Depending on the capital available, you can construct any of these ponds;
  • Earthen Pond:  This is digging up the soil (usually clay) to create a pond.
  • Concrete Pond: Here, blocks are used to construct the pond above the ground level, using cement, gravel and sand.
  • Fibre Pond: These are fibre tanks (e.g. GP tanks). The advantage of this pond is that it can be moved from place to place.
The following should be put into consideration when constructing your pond for your catfish business
  • Availability of constant water supply – This can be achieved by digging a borehole or well. Rain water can also be channeled into tanks
  • Depth of the pond – Depth affects the oxygen level. The ideal depth is 4 to 6feet.
  • A minimum of three ponds should be constructed in the area. Each pond for different sizes of fishes.
  • The pond should be close to steady power supply.
Equipment Needed
  • Pumping Machine and Pipes
  • Water Testing Equipment
  • Tanks
  • Baskets and Buckets
  • Seines  and Nets
  • Electricity Generator Set
  • Pond Aerators
Before starting the business, it is very important to draw out a good business plan. It should be comprehensive and detailed as the success of the business largely depends on it. As catfish takes 4 to 5 months to grow into table size, expenses to be made through out the period should be carefully laid out.

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Here are tips to help you successfully run your catfish farming In Nigeria :

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  • I will advise that a beginner starts with juvenile fishes instead of fingerlings.
  • Apply lime to the ponds before you introduce the fishes. Lime will kill all possible bacteria and reduce the acidic content of the water that can affect the fish.
  • Do not overcrowd the fishes. 1000 catfishes per acre is recommended.
  • Though catfish can survive in a wide range of temperature, the ideal water temperature is 85°. The temperature affects the rate of feeding in catfish. They eat more in warm temperature.
  • Overfeeding should be avoided as much as possible. Unconsumed feed will decompose and pollute the water thereby affecting the survival and growth of the fishes.
  • Feed fishes regularly as they tend to feed on themselves when they are hungry. At least twice daily.
  • Catfish feed should be bought from reputable dealers as only quality feed should be used.
  • The pond should be kept clean at all times. Only clean and clear water should be used. Impurities reduce the oxygen level in the water. The water should be changed regularly.
  • Proper marketing arrangement should be made before the end of the growing season. Harvest size is usually determined by the buyer.
  • The farmer should be observant. Sudden behavioral changes are tell – tale signs that something is wrong with the fishes.  

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