Indian Council of Agricultural Research


The honourable Secretary DARE and DG, ICAR Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra visits ICAR-CMFRI Mangalore Research Centre

The Honourable Secretary DARE and Director General ICAR, Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra made a brief visit to the Mangalore Research Centre of ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute on 11 December 2016 at 11:15h. He was accompanied by Dr. M.G.Nayak, Director NRC for cashew, Puttur.

The Scientist-in-Charge, Dr. Prathibha Rohit and the staff of the Research Centre extended a warm welcome to the honourable DG and briefed him about the major activities and achievements of the Research Centre. The vital role played by the Research Centre in the field of marine capture and culture fisheries was explained in brief.

The honourable DG addressed the staff and enquired if anyone had any issues that need to be addressed immediately. The staff did not have any issue to be unhappy or to address. The DG expressed his happiness on the good work done at the Research Centre and asked us to make an impact analysis of the small scale cage culture work demonstrated and practiced by the coastal fishers of the region.

Following the meeting the DG briefly went around the office cum laboratory complex and complimented the Research Centre on the well-equipped environment laboratory.

The DG then wished the Research Centre and the staff the very best and departed for Mangalore Airport at 11:30 h.


mKRISHI Fisheries selected as one of the top 20 winners at National level contest on Social Innovation

mKRISHI® Fisheries is a mobile app developed in collaboration with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) Innovation Lab – Mumbai, ICAR- Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute and Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) Hyderabad.  This app is a result of multi-dimensional research and field work involving the best of the expertise of all the partner organizations.    INCOIS  generates  Potential  Fishing  Zone  (PFZ),  a fish shoals prediction information based on the remote sensing data received from NOAA satellites, sea surface temperature  and  the  presence  of  phytoplankton which form the food of several fish species.  mKRISHI® Fisheries  app consolidates  these information and presents advisories in local language, with easy to use icons on Java and Android mobile phones.

Mumbai Research Centre of ICAR- CMFRI piloted this service in 56 fishermen societies in Raigad, Maharashtra. Fishermen used this service to plan their fishing trip and ventured into sea, only if PFZ was in their vicinity which helped to reduce unnecessary trips and the associated cost of diesel, ice  and labour. From a study conducted in 13 fishermen societies, ICAR- CMFRI estimated that it resulted in the saving of upto 30% in diesel costs which has huge benefits in terms of environmental impact where an estimated1.2% of global oil production is consumed in fisheries.

Apart from this, the prior information of Wind speed and direction, Wave Heights in a colour coded band, helped fishermen to identify the unsafe regions in sea. Fishermen are advised to go only when the information map is blue in colour. This five days upfront forecast helps even trawlers who go for multi-day fishing trips. Hence, this collaborative innovation aims at vulnerable fishermen population, majority of whom are below poverty line. It not only positively impacts their livelihood with improved catch, reduced cost; but also helps to prevent loss of lives, boat and fishing gears. Reduction in diesel consumption also leads to a less polluted environment. Lack of data signal availability in deep sea, posed another challenge for the fishermen. TCS and partners did a pilot to extend the mobile signal upto 30 km in the deep sea. This enable the price negotiation for the fishermen while they were in the sea itself and the fresh catch could be directed to desired port, optimizing the overall transportation.  

Dr. V.V.Singh, Scientist-in-charge, Mumbai Research Centre of ICAR-CMFRI received the award on 9 January  2017 at  the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas 2017, Bengaluru

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Theeranaipunya programme concludes

Theeranaipunya programme concludes

‘Theernaipunya’, a fisherwomen empowerment programme launched by the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) concluded on a successful note. The two-month training programme for skill enhancement and capacity development of fisher youth was conducted with the support of the Society for Assistance to the Fisherwomen (SAF), functioning under the Fisheries Department.

The training programme focused on skill development and imparting on-job training to the girls from fishing community. During the first month, training was given on higher education, job skills, personality development, leadership, entrepreneurship, communication skills, capacity development in competitive examinations etc to the participants. Field training was provided to the participants in educational or technical institutions, companies, business firms and other work places opted by the participants according to their aptitude.

Director Dr A Gopalakrshnan said the programme was part of CMFRI’s involvement in various activities of social responsibility.

Around 70 faculty members within and outside the institute took classes on various topics, said Dr Shyam S Salim, the Principal Scientist and Course Director of ‘Theeranaipunya’. Yoga practices and cultural programmes are also scheduled as part of the programme, he said.


Bulk sale of marine ornamental fish from Mandapam RC of CMFRI

Bulk sale of marine ornamental fish from Mandapam RC of CMFRI

The Mandapam Regional centre of CMFRI has been consistently successful in the breeding and seed production of marine ornamental fishes for more than a decade. Recently the centre has successfully bred hybrid clown fishes or designer clowns and the protocols for larval rearing & fingerling production have been standardised. The designer clowns such as Picasso, platinum, snowflake, etc are highly sought-after varieties in the domestic as well as international markets.

As a means of revenue generation for the office, the ornamental fishes produced at the centre is being sold to hobbyists or traders at nominal rates fixed by the institute. A remarkable achievement in this aspect was the recent bulk sale of marine ornamental fishes to a trader in Chennai, wherein the revenue generated through this single sale was Rs 1,62,500/- through the sale of percula clown, tomato clown, maroon clown and designer clowns. This is the first time that such a bulk sale of marine ornamental fishes is reported from any R&D institute in India. The fishes were purchased by M/s Umino Aquarium, East Coast road, Injambakkam, Chennai.


Climate Change: CMFRI submits Country Status Report on Indian Fisheries to SAARC

Climate Change: CMFRI submits Country Status Report on Indian Fisheries to SAARC  
Representatives from SAARC nations finalise a set of recommendations to be followed in member countries in future

The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), the largest fisheries research body in the country functioning under the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), has submitted the Country Status Report (CSR) about the impact of climate change on coastal fisheries and aquaculture sector in India.

The report was presented in a meeting between SAARC Agriculture Centre (SAC) and representatives from SAARC nations during a video conference convened by the SAC. The representatives in the fisheries sector of all SAARC nations except Sri Lanka attended the video conference.

The video conference was part of the Dhaka headquartered SAC’s initiative to assess the impacts of climate change in agricultural sectors of the SAARC member countries and come with resilient strategies.

A 3-member team headed by CMFRI Director Dr A Gopalakrishnan represented India in the conference. The team India presented the report which included the details of issues and challenges being developed owing to the climate change in the coastal fisheries and aquaculture sector in India. Dr P U Zacharia, Project Coordinator of National Innovations on Climate Resilient Aquaculture (NICRA) and Dr Grinson George, Senior Scientist were the other members of the CMFRI team who prepared the CSR which exposed disruptions being occurred due to the climate change in areas such as marine ecosystem, fish stock, harvesting sector, aquaculture, market and trade etc. The present condition of fishing communities was also included in the report. 


During the conference through skype, the members representing fisheries and aquaculture sector of the SAARC member countries reviewed the remedial steps to be taken to mitigate the impact of climate change on fisheries and aquaculture, and finalised a set of recommendations to be followed by the member countries in future. The meeting prioritised, in the recommendations, developing collaborative and comprehensive efforts to address climate vulnerabilities and commissioning of SAARC level task-force to formulate strategies to mitigate climate change impacts.

Conduct of awareness programmes on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and expansion of open sea cage farming and pen culture in coastal water bodies were also listed as the major recommendations.

Other noteworthy recommendations, finalised during the meeting, include introduction of saline temperature tolerant and fast-growing fish species for coastal aquaculture; establishment of fish sanctuary for improvement of natural stocks; setting up common gene bank for vulnerable species; development of alternate energy and fuel sources for inland and marine capture fisheries; utilisation of e-commerce ventures and information communication technology (ICT) for social and livelihood security of fishers and fish farmers;  framing of wetland conservation policies to manage coastal ecosystem; community based coastal fisheries and aquaculture management; upgrading and modernizing the fishing industry related infrastructure and setting standards for fishing practices; human resource development through education, training and  exchange programmes supporting member countries including visits, project support and resource sharing; development of ecologically sensitive habitats, mangroves, corals and wetlands; farming of potential carbon sequestering species such as seaweeds and integrating with multi trophic aquaculture (IMTA); and development of low cost fish farming technologies in tune with climate variability.

Dr Mohammed Anwar Sadaf from Afghanistan, Sayed Mehdi Hassan from Bangladesh, Namgay Dorji from Bhutan, Shafiya Naeem from Maldives, Suresh Kumar Wagle from Nepal and Dr Rehana Kausar from Pakistan also presented their country status reports and joined the discussion at the conference.

Dr S M Bokhtiar, Director of SAARC Agriculture Centre (SAC) and Dr S S Giri, Senior Programme Specialist (Fisheries), SAC coordinated the conference. 

Photo 2 View of Video Conference.jpg 

Applications are invited for DBT sponsored 3 months national training in Molecular Biology & Biotechnology for fisheries professionals


CMFRI helps Island village to usher in revolution in fish farming

CMFRI helps Island village to usher in revolution in fish farming
CMFRI’s cage farming initiative turns huge hit at Pizhala

At a time when the capture fisheries is reeling under pressure, Pizhala, the island village in Kochi is in limelight for ushering in revolution in fish farming. The farmers, including the women groups in the island, yielded a mega harvest of pearl spot, seabass and tilapia in cage culture.  Around 100 farmers took part in as many as 60 60 cage farming enterprises under the guidance of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) in Pizhala Island in Kadamakkudi Panchayat.

The farming was started seven months ago by stocking the fish seeds in cages made of GI pipes with the size of four metre each width and length and six metre depth. During the harvest done prior to the Christmas, the farmers got the seabass with an average weight of 3.5 kg and pearl spot with 250 g.

The Mariculture Division of the CMFRI provided training and other technical guidance to the farmers in various stages of the farming from the stocking period to the harvest to make the farming enterprise a grand success. Dr Imelda Joseph, Head of the Mariculture Division coordinated the cage fish farming in the area.

The cage farming has been proved less expensive and economically viable, said Dr A Gopalakrishan, Director of CMFRI. “An amount of Rs. 100 only is required to produce a kilo gram of pear spot by using cage farming method. But the farmer will get Rs. 500 to 600 for a kg of live pear spot farmed in cages”, he said.

“The fish farming revolution in Pizhala Island is a good sign that CMFRI’s research output is reaching to the common public”, Dr Gopalakrishnan said, adding that the cage farming method developed by the institute was being widely adopted by the fish farmers across the country.

He also said that CMFRI would provide all technical guidance to the farmers for popularising the novel farming initiative among them. “CMFRI will focus on boosting the eco-friendly farming models by directing the farmers to undertake the cage farming not to disrupt the ecology of the water bodies”, Dr Gopalakrishnan said.

Inaugurating the harvest, S Sarma MLA said the boosting of the cage farming would help alleviate poverty in Kadamakkudi Panchayat. “The locality is surrounded by water bodies ideally suitable for cage farming. More people should come forward to take part in the fish farming to utilise the prospects of the water resources in the area”, he said.

“CMFRI’s efforts have helped to bring in changes in the Island. Its initiative to start cage farming in the area has attracted more people into the fish farming venture”, Sarma said.

S Sarma also pointed out that a proposal would be prepared to explore the prospects of aqua-tourism in Kadamakkudi panchayat.

According to Dr Imelda Joseph, CMFRI laid emphasis for women empowerment by attracting women groups into the cage farming.

Salini Babu, President of Kadamakkudi Panchayat, Seena Francis, Member of Block Panchayat, Prakashan, Ward Member, Manikandan, Fisheries Coordinator and Ajitha, fish farmer spoke on the occasion.


Bumper Harvest of Pearl Spot

Bumper Harvest of Pearl Spot

The tribal community in Thandassery Colony in Maradu Municipality is ecstatic as they got a bumper harvest of pearl spot (Karimeen) in the cage culture project of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI).

The cage culture of pearl spot was started by the CMFRI eight months ago under the Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) of the Government of India.

During the harvest, the farmers got pearl spot with an average weight of 200 to 300 g from two cages made of GI pipes with four-metre each width and length. A number of 750 fingerlings of pearl spot was stocked in two cages at a density of 20 numbers per square metre. Pearl Plus, the feed developed by the CMFRI for the pearl spot farming was used in the cage culture which was carried out by the institute with the participation of five families in the tribal community in Thandassery.

The CMFRI team under the leadership of Dr Boby Ignatius, Principal Scientist trained the tribes in the farming activities and empowered them to become entrepreneurs in cage culture enterprise, a less expensive farming method.

According to CMFRI Director Dr A Gopalakrishnan, the institute utilised the Tribal Sub Plan to make the tribes self-reliant by empowering them to use cage farming venture. “The CMFRI has already developed economically viable cage farming models. We believe that the farming model is very much feasible among the tribal community to uplift their living standard”, he said.

He also said that more people including women groups from Maradu Municipality have approached us expressing their willingness to participate in the cage farming enterprise in future. “CMFRI has been carrying out the novel farming model among the tribes in all the maritime States in the country under the TSP”, Dr Gopalakrishnan said, adding that the institute would popularise the technology by conducting training programmes.

“Under the TSP, the institute has envisaged the idea of popularising cage farming method for the economic upliftment of the tribes and a livelihood option for the community”, said Dr Imelda Joseph, Chairman of the TSP in CMFRI. Cage culture initiative would provide them an additional income to the community, she said.

Divya Anilkumar, Chairperson of Maradu Municipality inaugurated the harvest. Vinu Joseph, Councillor, Rajendran, Leader of the tribe group in the area and Prakashan, leader of the farming group were present on the occasion. 

A view of the harvest of Pear Spot in cage culture in Thandassery in Maradu Municipality 

CMFRI extends technical support to Bangladesh

CMFRI extends technical support to Bangladesh

The Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) extended a helping hand to Bangladesh by providing technical support to improve its marine fisheries sector. CMFRI imparted technical guidance in the area of marine fish stock assessment to the neighbouring country as part of the follow up of the recommendations of the India-Bangladesh Joint Working Group (JWG) on cooperation in the field of fisheries and aquaculture. 

CMFRI, the largest marine fisheries research institute in India, extended its support to Bangladesh to develop necessary manpower and expertise in the area of marine fish stock assessment, a significant tool for conserving the fishery wealth.

In association with the Bay of Bengal Programme Inter-Governmental Organisation (BOBP-IGO), CMFRI exclusively trained the selected fisheries officials of Bangladesh on methods of stock assessments of tropical fishes. 

A total of 12 middle-level officials from the Bangladesh Fisheries Department, Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute in Mymensing and the Institute of Marine Science and Fisheries  University of Chittagong were trained at the CMFRI headquarters in Kochi.

The officials were trained on using various statistical tools, softwares and applications for the assessment of fish stock and data collection. Practical sessions and field visits were given importance in the training programme. Apart from this, the trainees were provided an opportunity for fishing experience onboard CMFRI’s fishing vessel F.V. Silver Pompano.

The Principal Scientists from the CMFRI namely, Dr Abdussamad E M, Dr Somy Kuriakose and Dr Shoba Joe Kizhakudan, took lead role in the training programme.

Dr. A Gopalakrishnan, Director, CMFRI said the training was aimed at helping Bangladesh develop necessary manpower and expertise in marine fish stock assessment and encourage research in the area. The training would be helpful to the Bangladesh officials to develop the data collection system for generating necessary fishery and biological inputs towards the conservation of fishery resources, he said.

“CMFRI is one of the premiere institutes in the world working in the area of tropical fish stock assessment. The institute is capable of extending its service in the area to the institutes within and outside the country”, Dr Gopalakrishnan said.

The participants felt that the training was much effective that the innovative ideas in the area of fish stock assessment would help them utilise for the sustainable harvest of fishery wealth in Bangladesh. They also viewed that the technical guidance rendered by the CMFRI was a valuable support to Bangladesh to conserve hilsa, a popular fish variety in Bangladesh.

The HRD Cell of the CMFRI coordinated the training programme.

KVK of CMFRI to weed public ponds by growing Fish

KVK of CMFRI to weed public ponds by growing Fish
Many of our fresh water resources particularly ponds are not in a usable condition due to excessive growth of aquatic weeds.  There are approximately 140 species of aquatic weeds in our water bodies.  Among these Salvinia, hydrilla & Pistia are the most detrimental to fresh water resources. There are many weedicides available in the market to control this.  However, they cause damage to the fish stock and also to the ecosystem.  
There is an innovative technology by growing certain species of fresh water fish which feed on the above species of weeds.  The common name of this fish is Grass Carp, species is Ctenopharyngodon idella.   This fish feed aquatic weeds upto the extend of 2 to 3 times of its body weight and it grows upto 50kgs. Since this fish cannot breed in the ponds, its management is easy.  A pond of 1 acre size filled with aquatic weeds requires 20 Grass Carp fish only.  The fish seeds are available in the market.  
Demonstration of this technology initiated by ICAR-Krishi Vigyan Kendra (Ernakulam) of CMFRI at Thripunithura, Perunninakkulam Shiva temple pond, which has an extent of 1.2 acre.  Grass carp fish fingerlings were released during a function held on 6th December 2016. The programme inaugurated by Dr. A. Gopalakrishnan, Director, ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute.  The Head of KVK Dr.Shinoj Subramannian, Fisheries Subject matter specialist Dr. Vikas P.A. were present. 

Dr. A.Gopalakrishnan, Director, CMFRI inaugurating the programme 

ICAR-KVK Ernakulam of CMFRI celebrated World soil day: Launched Drip irrigation kit

ICAR-KVK Ernakulam of CMFRI celebrated World soil day: Launched Drip irrigation kit

The World soil day celebration of ICAR-KVK Ernakulam of ICAR-Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute, Kochi, Kerala was held at Palluruthy, Ernakulam on 5th December 2016. Member of Kerala Legislative Assembly from Kochi, Shri K.J. Maxy inaugurated the programme and also launched KVK’s new Drip irrigation kit (irrigateasy). Smt. Hema Prahladan, Councillor, Kochi Corporation presided over. Dr.Shinoj Subramannian, Senior Scientist & Head of KVK, Dr.R.Narayanakumar, Principal Scientist & Head of SEETD division of CMFRI were present.  An yearly calendar for Nutmeg farming indicating month wise recommendations was also released during the programme. A seminar on soil test based fertilizer application followed.

Irrigateasy is a micro irrigation kit suitable for irrigating kitchen gardens up to 1 cent area or 80 grow bags. The unit can be connected to existing plumbing line or to a separate water storage. The basic concept behind introducing this kit is to make the kitchen gardening easy, particularly for non-traditional farmers with a view to attract them to self-farming for safe food production. An electronic control system can be added to automate the unit. The kit that can be installed easily works under low pressure or in gravity flow. The flow to each drip line can be controlled. The whole unit is portable and can be shifted easily. The modular design helps to expand it to bigger area. The cost of the unit that contains 50 meter drip tape, 6 end caps, 5 connectors with loack & valve, 2 meter connecting hose, take off with control valve along with a CD on installation procedure is only INR 500/- The kit would be available for purchase from KVK sales counter located at ICAR-CMFRI in 2 weeks time.


Annual calender farming

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