Aug 30 2018

Small-scale aquaculture in rural development (Updated 2018 version)



The content of this lecture includes the features of rural communities, models of small-scale aquaculture projects, planning & promoting small-scale aquaculture, challenges & Issues of concern, and examples of small-scale projects. Case studies have been included in the lecture. Main related issues have been addressed such as subsidies, adaption curve have been addressed. The lecture highlighted the need for developing country-specific criteria for the small-scale aquaculture operations based on size, inputs, outcomes, investment, labor and others.

Small-scale aquaculture in Rural Development (Updated 2018 version)



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Aug 17 2018

Touring the fish display in Zorritos market (Mercado de Zorritos) – Tumbes, Peru

Photo credit: Samart Detsathit (Thailand)

Review: Samart Detsathit and Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website)

In the fish part of the Zorritos market, fresh fish and seafood are displayed and sold. Because the market is next to the beach where a large number of fishing boats land the catch, the freshness of fish in this market is usually excellent. There are many fish species displayed in this market including barracuda, little tuna, mackerel, croaker etc. and lobster as well.



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Jul 31 2018

Fish hatchery management (Updated 2018 version)

This lecture on the management starts general information related to the modes of reproduction in various groups of aquatic organisms as illustrated by pictures and tables highlighting the significant differences in the modes of reproduction among various fish groups ranging from scattering eggs to giving birth passing by the key related information such as fecundity, parental care and other reproduction parameters. The focus of the lecture has been placed on the hatchery technology of fish species giving examples of various groups of finfishes and crustaceans in freshwater and marine waters including acquiring broodstock, hatchery facilities, reproduction technology (natural – artificial) and the relation of adopted technologies to the biology of fish as well as the economic considerations. The lecture addressed the quality of hatchery production whether through genetic enhancement or biosecurity measures such as vaccination or disease-free protocols.

Fish Hatchery management (Updated 2018 version)




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Jul 28 2018

Cage farming of marine fish in Bang-pat village, Pung-nga province (Thailand)

Photos credit: Samart Detsathit (Thailand)

Review: Samart Detsathit and Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website)

The inserted picture shows sea cages in which grouper, seabass and red snapper are cultured. The cage farm is located in Bang-pat which is a fisherman’s village.

All houses of the village are in the sea near the mangroves (not on land). This village was promoted and become a famous tourist place. Many tourists come to learn culture (especially the village is a Muslim one), buy fishery product and eat very fresh seafood that is also inexpensive. One can spot a floating restaurant in the picture.



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Jul 23 2018

Breeding of seahorse in Thailand

Photos credit: Samart Detsathit (Thailand)

Review: Samart Detsathit and Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website)

The breeding of seahorse species has begun in Thailand around 2010 where the reproduction of several species of seahorse have been attempted including Hippocampus spinosissimus, H barbouri (original from Philippines), H mohnikei, H kellogi, H kuda, H komes and H trimaculatus.

The aim of seahorse reproduction is to be released in natural water for stock enhancement. The hatchery shown in one of the picture belongs to the Coastal Aquaculture Research and Development Regional Center (under the Department of Fisheries).

The seahorse shown in the glass aquarium are H kuda of 7-day old, the white bowl shows 10-day old stage of the same species while the last picture is for H barbouri of 40-day old juveniles.

In this particular facility, 35,000 seahorse juveniles have been produced and restocked in natural waters.


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Jul 18 2018

Development and outlook of Egyptian aquaculture – 2018 Updated version

I delivered this lecture in the opening day of the 3-month training course (Fish Culture Development –Africa) on 16 July 2018. The official statistics have been used to develop the lecture. The over-all fish production systems have been addressed followed by the mode of development.  I tried to analyze and highlight the key point related to the features of aquaculture including the species composition, types of aquaculture, emerging systems and others. The production inputs of seed (hatcheries) and feed (feed mills) are covered in the lecture. Relating Egyptian aquaculture to the regional and world aquaculture has been addressed whenever required. The lecture included the Institutional framework and governing regulations. Fish trade (import and export) has been addressed in the lecture. Typically, this lecture starts and ends with human resources and capacity building.

Development and outlook of Egyptian aquaculture (2018)

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Jul 17 2018

Fish Culture Development – Africa (2018) training course


The inserted photo was taken on July 16, the first technical day of the “Fish Culture Development – Africa” training course for 2018. This 3-month course is being annually organized since 2004 by the Egyptian International Center for Agriculture – EICA” and jointly supported by EICA and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The course this year hosts 13 participants from 10 African countries. The photo shows Dr. Abdel Rahman El Gamal and the course participants:

Aholoukpe Cyrille (Benin), Daniel Lingomo, Clemence Valire, and Samy Ndala (DR Congo), Jean Ampere (Gabon),  Alhassan Arafat  Salifu (Ghana),  Winfred Kyalo (Kenya),  Ratsitohaina Lala Mihaja (Madagascar),  Oluwaseun Osiyoye (Nigeria),  Zeinab Elamin (Sudan), Abdulmalik  Kashaigiri (Tanzania),  Elijah Ssennyonjo and  Kanakutanda James Henry (Uganda)


Note: Please note that my contribution to the EICA courses is just teaching and supervising group projects. In other words, I am not the one to be asked about participation procedures in EICA courses. Whoever is interested is advised to visit the EICA website:



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Jun 22 2018

Use of chlorine compounds for eradicating the left-over organisms from fish ponds (Video)

Video credit: Zanou Dossou (Togo)

Review: Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the video channel)


Before starting any fish farming operation, it is essential that culture unit is free of aquatic organisms which could be accidently left-over from earlier operation whether in fry nursing or grow-out. While this matter is simple in completely drained tanks and/or ponds, it turns a real concern in situations where culture units cannot be completely drained. Small water buddies scattered in earthen ponds could be sufficient to host various organisms including fish fry, fingerlings, molluscs, insects, snails and others. In fact, the adults of some hardy species can survive un-noticed in watery footprints (e.g. tilapia and African catfish). These left-over organisms –depending on their types and densities- may threaten the following crops, and so the eradication of such organisms is a must to ensure a safe crop.

There is a long list of compounds which can be used for such disinfection process. The effectiveness, availability and cost are criteria used in choosing a given disinfectant. Moreover, the easiness of neutralizing the applied substance is an important criterion to consider.

The video shows the use of chlorine solution for the eradication of possible left over organisms. As the remained water scattered in the pond is not easy to estimate, the volume and concentration of chlorine required for such task would depend on personal experience as well as the immediate reaction of organisms that may occur in shown water buddies. In such situations, fish farmers may lean more to overdosing than under-dosing.

It is often recommended to allow water sufficient to cover the whole pond bottom before the application of chlorine. Doing so will ensure a better mixing of chlorine solution with the entire bottom water. Afterwards, and before stocking the fish, no sign of life should be observed in treated water otherwise, repeating the process is possible.

The most common chlorine source used in aquaculture ponds are calcium hypochlorite whether in the form of powder or tablets.

After a day or two of the chlorine applications, pond water is raised and the dead organisms are netted out before stocking the new batch of farmed organisms.


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Jun 15 2018

Small-scale aquaculture in Malawi

Photo credit: Spriano Mpango and Thokozire Gwaza (Malawi)

Review: Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the website)

The inserted picture shows the digging of a small fish pond by a group of women in Malawi. In fact, there have been several programs in Malawi which are supported by the government as well as by NGOs that promote small-scale aquaculture especially among the families with little resources with a special emphasis on female-headed households. This approach has been implemented through either fish farming clubs or similar fish farming groups.

As expected, a small pond like the one shown in the picture should be manually constructed as the use of machinery is usually not possible and/or not justified.

In dry regions, most small ponds are rain-fed constructed on the land as long as the soil is suitable for retaining water.

A small pond as such is usually used to grow the popular fish to the community such as “chambo” which is a tilapia species (Oreochromis lidole) and African catfish (Clarias gariepinus). This type of ponds is valuable towards addressing nutritional deficiencies at household level in rural communities.



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Jun 14 2018

Artificial reproduction of grey mullet (Mugil cephalus) in Egypt – Video

Video credit: Ahmed Shaheen (Egypt)

Review: Ahmed Shaheen and Abdel Rahman El Gamal (Founder of the video channel)

This video was filmed in the first constructed governmental marine hatchery located in Alexandria (Egypt).

Since the grey mullet cannot reach its full sexual maturation in captivity, the broodstock that are required for the artificial reproduction has to be obtained from the wild.

As the video starts with the catching of broodstock then stocking and maintain them in outdoor tanks until moving the ready-to-spawn broodstock into the indoor facility in the hatchery. The video shows the egg sampling process using a catheter.

In this particular process, females are hormonally induced while males can be only checked based on releasing sperm upon a light pressure.  If males are not ready, hormonal induction is administered.  In order for a successful reproduction, egg diameter has to reach 500 microns.

The hormone used in case of females is done as follows:

First injection: Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) at the dose of 10,000 IU/kg of the female size

Second injection: LHRH at the dose of 10-20 microgram/kg of the female size

In regard to unready males, the injection is done under skin using 17-alpha methyl testosterone at a dose of 10 microgram/male size (about 300-350 g/specimen). This is done 3 weeks before the spawning period.

The broodstock are stocked the spawning fiberglass tank of about 4 to 4.5 m3 size at a rate of three males to one female. Once the spawning is observed, the broodstock are lifted from the spawning tank leaving the fertilized eggs to develop. In a tank as such, about 250,000 – 500,000 embryos are produced bearing in mind the high fecundity of the species which is about 1.5 million eggs/kg of a female weight. Hatching occurs after about 100 to 110 hours at 25 C.


Note: the technology of the artificial reproduction of grey mullet is available in Egypt but it is carried out only at experimental scale. Fish farms rely on naturally collected mullet fry which is always larger in size and at much lower cost compared to hatchery-produced seeds. The scaling up of the artificial reproduction of mullet would be only justified upon the stopping of the collection practice of the mullet fry from the wild.



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