Hello Africans, Nigerians and other tribes and nations of the world, i am yet going to be showing you one of the most lucrative Agricultural business of all time, with specific focus on Nigeria, which is Fish Farming. This business as been around for a while now and it is doing well and yet its going to be making more millionaires as days goes by, i am not going to be sharing how you can start alone, i will also be sharing why you should start Fish.
Fish FARMING is one of the most promising business anywhere in the world, there are a good number of reasons why so many people prefer and will always prefer fish to meat, apart from that, anything Food and Agric Business blossoms in Nigeria, Africa and the world at large because There is a geometrical growth in population of the world and it is yet still growing on a daily basis, people are in need of food, so there is always a ready market waiting for whatsoever Agro product you have, Gov. ambode of LAGOS state, make it clear that over 2.3billion goes to Food and Agric Business venture daily in Lagos.
Now can you beat that?
With the massive growth in population annually in Nigeria and serious influx of people to LAGOS yearly, i can say that it will soon be 10 billion daily, can you see how profitable agric and Food Business can be?
Let’s now take a close look into Fish Farming Business.
Before, we look into How to start Fish Farming, let’s see The benefits therein in Fish Farming;
Benefits Of Fish Farming
1. Fishery products is by far the most popular animal products in the market, constituting more than 60% of meat products in the Nigerian market alone.
2. Fish is one of the highest source of protein. Fish is a low-fat high quality protein that is filled with omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins such as D and B2 (riboflavin). Fish is also very rich in calcium and phosphorus and is equally a great source of minerals, such as iron, zinc, iodine, magnesium, and potassium.
3. Fish sells faster than any other animal products in the market and is relatively cheaper than meats, making it the number one choice when it comes to affordability.
4. Fish grows very fast as practices in fish farming makes it possible for farmers to increase the fastness of their fish growth by giving them certain feeds, ensuring that you harvest and sell within short period of time.
5. Fish is the biggest source of Omega-3 fatty acids which is extremely beneficial to human heart; Omega-3 helps to keep our heart and brain very healthy. Since bodies don’t produce Omega-3 fatty acids, the only source through which we can get it is by what we eat, that is where fish comes to the rescue.
6. Fish farming is very profitable. With proper planning and good management, N3 million investment in fish farming could easily result to N4 million of pure profit within six months.
7. Fish farm does not cause any environmental hazard. Unlike poultry farming, you can setup fish farm anywhere, including residential areas.
If you have a specious compound, you can easily setup a small fish farm within your backyard without any regulatory precaution.
Risks And Challenges In Fish Farming
1. Fish is very sensitive to manage and a slight mistake could result to degenerated growth of your fish or even death which may cause massive revenue loss.
2. Setting up fish farm is capital intensive, much more than that of poultry and snail farming. Setting up fish farm requires more careful planning and much capital input. A relatively small fish farm may take up to N500,000 to setup, while bigger ones takes millions of naira.
3. Due to the cost of production, fish produced from the farm is priced higher than those caught from the rivers and ponds by fishermen. Therefore, if there are good quantity of fisherman’s fish in the market, you may find it difficult to sell as people would prefer the cheaper ones ( but with the high demand for fish today, fish hunted in the rivers can not be able to meet up with the consumers we have on the queue in our world today, making the scientific system of farming fish, good and lucrative enough).
4. Fish requires much monitoring, care, feeding and good management for the venture to be profitable, that’s why, every beginner really need the help of those who are into fish business already to help in monitoring and managing the farm.
Types Of Fish You Can Farm
Haven seen the benefits as well as the risks involved in fish farming, let’s now proceed to decide which specie of fish we want to farm. Below are some of the most popular fish species that is suitable for Aquaculture.
1. Cat Fish – Catfish is almost the most popular fish in Nigeria, this fish species is by far the most cultivated in Nigeria. One thing good about catfish is that it is one of the easiest fish species to cultivate.
So, people naturally flow to the direction of fish specie they found to be the easiest to cultivate, then looking at the rate of demand for catfish pepper soup in our hotels, restuarants, bars and eateries today, there is a huge market for catfish amongst others.
2. Tilapia – Second most popular fish in Nigeria’s aquaculture industry, Tilapia is a fish species that lives in fresh shallow water. Tilapia is very easy to cultivate and very popular in Nigerian market, it reproduces very rapidly and grows fast too, they are also characterize by large/many bones on their body.
3. Mackerel (Titus) – This is by far the most popular fish in Nigerian market but so sad it’s not farmed. All Mackerel Fish are “wild caught” but some farmer in Nigeria are considering the possibility of creating artificial salty water that will be similar to sea water where mackerel can only survive. Can this deep blue sea fish specie be cultivated artificially? Only time will tell but for business sake, we will focus our attention on Catfish and Tilapia.
How to Start Fish Farming in Nigeria
Starting fish farming is easy, but certain factors must be put in place to ensure success is achieved. I will be discussing some of those factors below;
- Capital : This is very important in fish farming business, just as it is in every their businesses, i have do well to make it clear in every f my articles on Agriculture businesses, especially livestock farming, animals are not what you keep and say, when money come you will feed them, you ought to have drawn out a plan to cater for every of their needs, feeds, medication, and all necessary equipment must be in place, a few days drop in feeding and smooth running can make you loss a great number of fishes, feeding is a major aspect of fish farming business that drain money a lot, so you must estimate your capital to cover, feeding, pond construction, purchase of fingerlins, juvenile, expertise, workers/labourers, transportation, pumping machine, farm smooth running and miscellaneous expenses. For beginner fish farmers, i recommend that you start small, and learn/grow your business with experience. For large scale fish farming, i recommend farmers to budget a million plus.
2. Site Location : This is another very important factor, Fishes are aquatic animals, they dwell and survive in water, so when you are choosing your site location, more often than not, choosing a water logged place or an area, close and accessible to water body becomes very important, or it can rather function as an advantage to reduce your spending, from my experience over the years in fish business, trying to source for alternative water system like borehole and so on, are not the best practices in fish farming, they won’t give you the best result, most experienced farmer don’t grow fish during dry season, except when there is bound to be a very high demand for it, lie in the case of a festive season. But normally, when you situate your farm close to a water logged environment or any water body around, you will experience good return as your fishes will do better.
There are various housing system in fish farming, starting from the Natural Earthen Pond (this involves digging some portion of the soil, upward, so that like a water body, a portion of earth is deep down, filled with water and the fishes have a natural experience inside, their movement is controlled but yet, they have almost a natural experience with the ones inside the sea, experience as proven over the years, that this kind of housing system gives the best result in fish farming in terms of low mortality and a good weight of fishes), to the artificial ones like “Concrete ponds(here, the pond is constructed above the ground level upward and water is filled in to keep the fishes, healthy, active and alive), Tarpulin/fiber pond( This is using tarpulin made in a form that suits having water inside it and fishes are living there).
Some of The Equipment you will need in fish farming includes;
- Electricity power supply source of generator.
- Fish Net and Seines
- Pond Aerator
- Fish Feeds
- Vegetation or tree/shed around the ponds.
- Medication and Drugs
- Transportation system.
- Pumping machine and pipes
- Water testing facilities
3. Dig a Borehole – Adequate water supply is the lifeblood of fish farm and lack of it may result to disaster because water need to be changed on regular interval. Naturally available sources of water such as borehole and river water is the most suitable. Rain water and tap water from chemically treated source is not recommended for fish cultivation.
4. Overhead Tank – This is the water reservoir from which water is supplied to your ponds. This tank has to be connected to your ponds through plumbing system to make it convenient for water to flow into your ponds when needed.
5. Juvenile Fish – Get your juvenile from another farm that specializes in supplying it. You need to go for the high yield specie of catfish or tilapia and make sure you are getting it from a healthy farm.
6. Get Training – Not the kind of training you get from one day seminars; you need to get attached to a fish farm for proper apprenticeship. For you to properly learn this trade, you need at least two months training on this.
Remember that your investment is at stake, trial and error is not good in business except you have unlimited funds to experiment with.
Feasibility Study For Standard Fish Farming
I found the analysis below and decided to add it as sample case study you can follow.
“This feasibility study prepared for a catfish farm capacity of 10,000 and fingerlings of high breed catfish where to be stocked. The expenses from pond construction to marketing is considered. The farm is to have 10 concrete ponds of flow through system and each pond is to contains 1,000 stocked catfish.
Cost of constructing each pond is as follows.
Each pond is 3m x 2.5m by 1.4m, each pond consumes 210 blocks and each bag of cement for 30 blocks. Hence 210 x 10 = 2,100 blocks. 2,100/30 = 70 bags of cement needed. 2000 x 70 = 140,000 naira.
4trips of sand used =7,000×4 = N28,000
2trips of gravel = 32,000x 2 = N64,00
Cost of labour = N150,00
Cost of plumbing (inlet and outlet facility) = N100,000.
Cost of bore hole = N150,000.
Cost of treatment = N50,000.
Cost of high breed fingerlings 30×10,000 = N300,000.
Cost of feeding from day one to maturity stage is 200 bags of foreign feed = N1,000,000.
After the average weight of the fish was 1.7kg. And it was sold at 800 naira each. The output was 800×9800 fishes, due to 200 mortality. 800 x 9800 = N7,840,000.
Input is N3.25’million. The profit is N4.59 million after six months of culture.” Following this cost analysis, you can easily invest N3 million and expect a massive turnover of N4 million with six months it will take for you to harvest and sell.
There is no doubt that fish farming is very lucrative and profitable business in Nigeria.
You need to get it right by drawing complete business plan and following it to the later. You need to apply good management skills and follow the acceptable standard. If you do all these, you are sure to make good profit from your fish farming business in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, and South Africa.
Kindly share with friends and if you have any question, you can drop them below.