Cage Aquaculture to improve fish produce for fish farmers in Manipal

To fulfill and attain the goal of aquaculture, Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), is developing a sustainable eco-system which will enable the economic self-sufficiency of the fish farmers in the region. With the support of a grant from the Department of Science and Technology, Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT), is in the process of developing a scientific and technical solution to help the fish farmers to increase their fish yield. This solution involves strategic location identification and conducive ecosystem for the growth of fishes such that it enhances the fish produce. With an increase in fish produce, the income of the fish farmers will rise and at the same time this method will also bridge the gap between demand and supply as well as assure food security for the region. Based on the suitability, cages are installed at two locations, One in Moodukudru and the other Swarna backwaters in Manipal. The cages have been populated with fish seeds and the ecosystem in the cage is being monitored by deploying a smart system. The sites were also visited by the then Minister of Fisheries Mr. Srinivas Poojary and released the fish seeds in the cages. One of the biggest advantages of the cages used for aquaculture is that it requires a small amount of financial investment and this method of increasing fish produce can be used in different water bodies such as ponds, rivers, lakes, strip pits and streams. In addition to these advantages, processes such as feeding, sampling, observation, and harvesting are relatively simple in cage aquaculture. This method is particularly useful for those fish farmers who may not have physical and financial resources and the experience to start an enormous aquaculture operation. Apart from using cage aquaculture, the team from MIT also applied the smart water quality measurement system to monitor the quality of water. This smart water quality system aids in controlling pollution levels in the water body and controls the quality and productivity of the water as well. The figure below depicts the representation of Cage Aquaculture as developed by the MIT team.

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