Kochi: In the first of its kind achievement in the world, the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute CMFRI has successfully developed the seed production technology of a food fish, a marine ornamental fish and a marine ornamental shrimp which are commercially important and high value species in export market. The Vizhinjam Research Centre of the CMFRI developed the breeding technology of the food fish pink ear emperor, locally known as yeri, ornamental fish Marcia’s anthias and ornamental shrimp named camel shrimp.
The successful development of captive brood stock and breeding of all these species is the first of its kind in the world. CMFRI developed the technology after two years continuous attempt using the Recirculating Aquaculture System (RAS) set up at the institute.
A scientific team led by Dr M K Anil, Scientist-in-charge of Vizhinjam Research Centre of CMFRI developed the breeding technology which is expected to boost the mariculture industry and seafood export as well.
The pink ear emperor, a high value food fish with superior flesh qualities and hardy nature, is a delicacy in the domestic market and has got a potential demand in global seafood markets too. This is a sought after food fish which attains a growth of up to 2kg and fetches Rs.400 to 600 per kg in the domestic market. According to Dr M K Anil, in the wake of dwindling catch of the species, the breeding technology of pink ear emperor will help the country boost the production of the species through mariculture activities such as cage fish farming. Presently the open sea cage farming in the country is restricted to three or four species of marine fish. With a better growth rate and standardized breeding technology, the pink ear emperor is going to be a candidate species among cage fish farmers, he said. “The technology has been standardized for scaling up of this species among interested farmers”, he added.
High Value Ornamental Fish
The seed production of Marcia’ anthias, which is a high value marine ornamental fish, is a great achievement as it exhibits complicated breeding habits, Dr M K Anil said. “The species is one of the most expensive reef fishes traded in the marine aquarium export market and fetches around$ 30 per fish in international market”, he said adding that standardization of larval rearing protocol of this which is present near coral and patchy reef areas. With the large-scale degradation of coaral reefs this species is facing immense challenge with respect to its breeding habitats. The present technology developed by the CMFRI will also help the scientists to produce the fish seeds artificially without disrupting its ecosystem”, he said.
The hatchery production and larval rearing technology of the camel shrimp (Rhynchocinetes durbanesis) was also developed at the CMFRI. The shrimp grows up to 4-5 cm in length and fetches $10-12 in the international market and in the local market it is sold at Rs.500-700 per piece.
Redand white lines on a translucent body with many white spots make the shrimp a hot pick among the aquarium hobbyists as well as traders.
“There are no published reports of successful captive breeding of the shrimp available so far” Dr Anil said. He pointed out that the trade of camel shrimp, which is found in crevices in the coastal waters, is entirely based on wild caught ones. “CMFRI’s seed production technology will enrich the existing trades of marine ornamentals”, he said.
Source: Aqua International