What Are Some Advantages and Disadvantages of Fish Farming?
Some of the advantages of fish farming include creation of employment, source of proteins, high fish yields and maintenance of fish populations. However, fish farming is expensive to set up and contributes to water pollution.
Advantages of Fish Farming
Creation of Employment Aquaculture has resulted in job creation in fields such as animal research and fish hatchery management. Also, harvested fish contributes to employment creation in food processing industries, transport sector and restaurants. On the other hand, fish farming is an important source of income for aquaculture investors.
Source of Proteins Fish farming provides an important source of proteins and nutrients essential for healthy living. With the growing global population, fish helps to supplement other protein sources such as animal meat, milk and beans. In addition, fish contains omega-3 fatty acids that assist in brain function, normal development and reduces the risks of heart diseases.
Limits Overfishing As a result of growing world population, the demand for fish increases day by day. Fish farming sets to meet this demand hence preventing overfishing of wild fish from the oceans and lakes.
Easy to Maintain Compared to cattle farming and poultry farming, fish farming is easy to maintain and has low running costs. Fish farms can be set up almost anywhere with clean water supply and a large water body. In this regard, if properly managed, fish farming is commercially profitable due to low running costs.
High Yields Fish farming methods shield edible fish from marine predators such as large fish, bears and fish-eating birds. This stabilizes the fish population hence resulting in high fish yields. In addition, farmed fish are constantly monitored for parasites, sickness and other factors that might hinder their development.
Moreover, fish kept in fish farms are left to mature over a given period of time before they are harvested. This ensures maximum yields by eliminating the capture of young fish as experienced in standard fishing methods.
Prevents Extinction of Some Fish Species Aquaculture helps to revive the populations of some fish species, such as cod, sea bass and red snapper. The high demand of such fish species necessitates the need for breeding in fish farms in order to prevent their extinction.
Disadvantages of Fish Farming
Water Pollution and Infections Farmed fish are often treated with antibiotics, disinfectants and pesticides. These chemicals combined with fish wastes may find their way into surrounding fresh water hence resulting in water pollution.
Moreover, the congestion of fish in one area may result in the death of some fish. Dead fish encourage the growth of bacteria and other infections, which may threaten the entire fish population in the water source. Also, due to fish congestion, infections spread easily among the fish population since they are often in close contact.
Expensive to Set Up The initial setup costs for fish farming may be expensive due to the need to install fish cages, hatcheries and provision of processed fish food. In addition, as opposed to fish farming in large water bodies, fish farming in ponds requires costly excavations and channeling of river water into and out of the fish ponds.
Genetic Abnormalities Farmed fish have limited gene pool during breeding. This increases chances of genetic abnormalities among the fish offspring.