Ural fish farmers succeed in breeding high-value freshwater species

February 29, 2008 15:59

Kyshtym fish farm (OOO Kyshtymskoye Rybovodnoye Khozyaistvo) located in the province of Chelyabinsk in the Urals has become the province's leading producer of farmed fish in 2007 with its harvest growing 1.6-fold to 800 metric tons, according to the company.

More specifically, in 2007 the company collected 280 million eggs of Coregonus whitefish and in spring 2007 they released 146 million larvae into the waters of the province's north. In order to help boost their harvest the farmers renewed their fishing fleet by one third and purchased three tractors and minibuses.

The farm's Commercial Director Alexander Novikov says one of their last year achievements is commissioning of own whitefish hatchery. The new hatchery enables the company to reduce costs for stocking material, considerably increase the scale of fish stocking and improve the farm's economic indices.

(Earlier the stocking material to be later released into the local water bodies was purchased at high prices in Tyumen and other regions. For instance, in 2000 the company received a large loan from the local budget to finance the above purchase.)

The project provides for construction of a large 120-meter long department, but, due to problems with funding, only the first stage of the project (12 meters to 47 meters namely) was built in undertime through September-October 2007. In the following month of November the farmers already stocked roes.

The department built from heated sandwich panels is warmed by water fed from the water body for technological purposes. Such water provides temperature of 0 to +2 degrees C optimum for fish eggs, though during severe frosts the farmers use stove heat to prevent water from freezing.

At the next stages, the company plans to construct a facility to ongrow juvenile fish.

Muksun and grass carp

So far the company buys such material as silver carp and grass carp for stocking. In 2008 the farm plans to start growing trout and such delicatessen northern fish as muksun with the latter stocking material to be purchased in Tobolsk. Besides, the company thinks of breeding nelma (a valuable Coregonus family species) to be then released into the province's waters.

Though Russia has got no experience in commercial culture of burbot (freshwater cod) which is highly appreciated by epicures, Kyshtym farmers think that it may be quite feasible. In the lake of Kasargi 1.5-year-old fish have reached a weight of 800 grams. According to Novikov, predatory burbot is needed for the Russian inland water bodies as a sanitarian and ameliorator delivering ponds and lakes from weak and sick fish.

Kyshtym farmers have 15 water bodies in their charge.

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