Aquaculture in Cameroon - PEEA project 2017
2017 (9 days)
- Helgi Thorarensen
- Olafur Sigurgeirsson
- David Benhaim
- Sustainable Aquaculture
- Ministry of Livestock, Fisheries and Animal Industry, Cameroon
The course was taught over a period of nine days. The daily program started at 9:00 with lectures followed by practicums and discussions in the afternoons. The program was broken up by a breakfast close to 10:30 and then lunch fairly late in the afternoon. Most days the program ended between 4 and 5 pm. One day was devoted to the field trip. At the end of the course participants were given a certificate of participation in the course.
The course was held at a government fish aquaculture station in Ebolowa. The station had a hatchery, broodstock of African catfish, tanks and fish ponds. This made practicums on hatchery management and water quality easy. The staff at the station were very helpful and ready to provide all that was needed. Excellent breakfasts and lunches were provided at the station.
The course was set up as seven modules (see below) and taught through lectures, practicums and discussion sessions.
Module I. Introduction to aquaculture: The participants were given an outline of the course content and organisation, the status of world aquaculture and the status of aquaculture in Cameroon. This was followed by a lively discussion session on aquaculture development in Cameroon – the main opportunities and challenges.
Module II. Hatchery management: Lectures on seed production, inducing females to spawn and live feed for larvae. The lectures were followed by practicums on inducing females and first feeding of larvae. Water quality in recirculation systems for catfish larvae and juveniles was introduced in a later module.
Module III. Farm design: Lectures on farm design and various issues associated with setting up a fish farm.
Module IV. Water quality for cultured fish: Lectures on water chemistry and water quality both in ponds and in recirculation systems. Practicums on measurements of water quality both at the course location and during field visits.
Module V. Feed management for cultured fish: Lectures about feed composition (proteins, lipids, carbohydrates and vitamins), nutritional requirements of fish and feed formulation. Information on available raw materials was collected during the field trip followed by a practicum on feed formulation for catfish.
Module VI. Field trip: The field trip was organised to visit and evaluate the performance of fish farms. Participants were organised into groups that each evaluated the farms visited by asking the farmers questions about farming practices and production, evaluating pond design, water quality and the use of feed. Also, a purveyor of raw materials useable for feeds, was visited to examine which raw materials were available and their price. The following day, the groups discussed their findings and ended by presenting the results and recommendations to improve the farms.
Module VII. Farm management: This module attempted to summarise and link all that had been taught during the course and related to farm management and farm economics. A simple Excel model was developed and introduced to demonstrate the effects of different management decisions on the economics of the farm. This was followed by a general discussion on viability of fish farms. Also, the issue of “seed and feed” presented at the beginning of the course, was revisited and discussed further.