Mirsarai fish seed production farm resumes operation after 14 years

Published : 09 May 2022 09:54 PM

After a long hiatus of 14 years, the only government fish seed production farm in Mirsarai is going into full swing production. Local fish farmers are smiling with hope at the news of re-opening of this farm established on 7 acres of land in Wahedpur Union of the upazila.

According to the information provided by the concerned department, the government established this fish seed production farm on 7 acres of land in Kamaldaha area of Wahedpur Union in 1977 to provide general advice, training and low cost fry to the local fish farmers. Rui, Katal, Mrigel and other local and foreign species of fish fry are to be produced here. 

Although it was good in the beginning, due to various complications, the activities here broke down for a while. The government later leased it to Grameen Bank. Later in 2007 it was re-incorporated under the Ministry of Fisheries and Livestock. After that, due to lack of maintenance and manpower, its activities came to a complete halt.

Meanwhile it is hoped that after a long hiatus last year, the authorities took the initiative to reform it by re-appointing a total of 8 posts including farm manager, office assistant, pump operator and security guard out of 4 posts in the hatchery. Hatchery production will start in April or May this year, although training and overall support to farmers is currently being provided.

According to the information given by Mirsarai Upazila Fisheries Office, there are fish farms in about 15 thousand acres of land in Muhuri project area of the upazila. From where 49 thousand metric tons of fish is produced and marketed every year. Farmers sell fish worth Tk 1,127 crore from these fisheries projects every year. As the seed production at Mirsarai Fish Seed Production Center has been stopped for so long, the fish farmers here buy fry from different places at higher prices to cultivate. At present, the farmers are quite excited about the news of its launch.

Mohammad Omar Farooq cultivates fish commercially in Tekerhat area of Ichakhali union in Mirsarai. He said, “We, the farm owners, are benefiting from the fact that the only government fish seed production farm here has started its operations in 2021. The farm manager is assisting us with training and overall guidance. Which is why last year my farm saw the face of profit. We will benefit more when fry production starts.”

Mirsarai Muhuri Project Fisheries and Anwar Agro Limited proprietor Anwar Hossain said, “Carp national fish is cultivated in about 15 thousand acres of land in Muhuri project area. Where 4 thousand per acre is required for about 60 lakh fish fry. Mirsarai does not cultivate lobster or shrimp separately. Shrimp is cultivated mixed with white fish. There is a demand of about 30 million shrimp fry.”

Farmers of Mirsarai collect carp and shrimp fry from Mongmansingh, Bogra, Comilla, Noakhali and Feni. This is the cost of transport. In addition, the fry often die due to being brought from far away. 

If Mirsarai Fish Seed Production Center is started, the farmers here will get the benefits. Everyone believes that besides saving car rental, good quality fry will also be available, 

he added.

Motasim Billah manager of Mirsarai Fish Seed Production Farm said, “Since the recruitment of half the manpower in 2021, we have been assisting the farmers with regular training and advice on fish production. In the current financial year, 5 ponds of the farm have been renovated. High quality quarantined lab is being set up here. Due to which we will be able to start fry production at the beginning of next monsoon season. We will start producing carp fry at the beginning”

Mirsarai Upazila Fisheries Officer Nasim Al Mahmud said about 8,000 farmers in Mirsarai are involved in fish farming where a large number of carp fry are required every year. As the Mirsarai fish seed production farm was closed for a long time, the farmers bought fry from different districts including Mangmansih, Bogura and Comilla. As a result, a lot of money goes to car rental. Farmers will benefit a lot if fish seeds can be produced in the hatchery of Mirsarai.