Development of freshwater aquaculture in Myanmar

Credit: Zaw Zaw Htwe (Myanmar)

Myanmar’s fish culture has started in 1953 with imported Tilapia mossambica. By 1988, there were only 2550 hectares of fish ponds in the whole country. As fish was realized to be the stable diet for the people and one of the potential industry in the national economy of Myanmar, the State Peace and Development Council promulgated Aquaculture Law No. 24/89. Accordingly, the number of fish ponds in the whole country tremendously increased reaching more than 127000 hectares in 2000-2001. Freshwater prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) is a key farmed freshwater organism. Earthen ponds represent the major source of aquaculture production whereas several species are farmed including rohu (Labeo rohita) which is the dominant fin-fish species in freshwater fish culture.  Most farmers follow polyculture system utilizing all stratum and natural food of pond water stocking major carps such as rohu, catla (Catla catla), mrigal (Cirrhinus mrigala), common carp (Cyprinus carpio), grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella), big head carp (Aristichthys nobilis), silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix), red tilapia (Tilapia mossambica x O. niloticus), hybrid catfish (Clarias gariepinus x Clarias macrocephalus), rohtee (Rohtee cortio), and stripped catfish (Pangasius sutchi).

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