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JIS News

Farmers and other stakeholders in the aquaculture industry have benefitted from a seminar on aquaculture diseases aimed at highlighting the impact of diseases in fish and shrimp production in the industry.
The seminar was hosted by the American Soybean Association (ASA) at the Bodles Agricultural Research Station in Old Harbour recently.
In his presentation, United Kingdom based Research Scientist and Lecturer, David Conroy said that tilapia fish could have at least five diseases at any one time, adding that once fish were infected by one disease, they became weakened and were more susceptible to contracting other diseases.
He pointed out that the most critical components of preventing and controlling a number of fish diseases included the provision of the right environment for breeding such as proper handling of the fish, proper nutrition, and good water quality.
Mr. Conroy also noted that emphasis was being placed on the production of tilapia fish, as it was the variety of fish that had the second most significant value to aquaculture.
“Because of their levels of production, tilapia fish are the second variety of fish of greatest importance in aquaculture, second only to trout and salmon, in terms of amount produced and the amount sold commercially,” he said.
The Research Scientist emphasized that producers of the tilapia breed should create as much of a stress free environment as possible in order to obtain maximum yields.
Meanwhile, in an interview with JIS News, consultant to the ASA, Dr. Robert Thomas explained that the American Soybean Association was seeking to promote the use of soy as a healthy alternative food product for humans and animals, as well as fish.
He noted that the aquaculture diseases seminar was part of a series, which had begun earlier this month, where sheep and goat farmers also benefitted from information critical to the small ruminant industry.In addition, another seminar is to be held for pig farmers in April this year as well as a nutritional session later in the year, which will demonstrate creative ways of preparing soy protein.
Dr. Thomas challenged the farmers to make use of research information, which is being introduced into the Caribbean and in particular to Jamaica in order to make their businesses more viable.