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Horticulture-fish system

The top, inner and outer dykes of ponds as well as adjoining areas can be best utilized for horticulture crops. Pond water is used for irrigation and silt, which is a high-quality manure is used for crops, vegetables and fruit bearing plants. The success of the system depends on the selection of plants. They should be of dwarf type, less shady, evergreen, seasonal and highly remunerative. Dwarf variety fruit bearing plants like mango, banana, papaya, coconut and lime are suitable, while pineapple, ginger, turmeric, chilli are grown as intercrops. Plantation of flower bearing plants like tuberose, rose, jasmine, gladiolus, marigold and chrysanthemum provide additional income to farmers.

Ideal management involves utilization of middle portion of the dyke. Residues of vegetables cultivated could be recycled into fishponds, particularly when stocked with fishes like grass carp. Grass carps can be stocked @ 1000/ha and addition of common carps are beneficial for utilizing feacal debris. In mixed culture of grass carps along with rohu, catla and mrigal, in 50: 15: 20: 15 ratio at a density of 5000 fish/ha. Similarly when banana or coconut is cultivated in rows in wetlands, the ditches made between such rows act as supply or drainage canals. These canals serve as fish culture systems owing to their round-the-clock supply of water and rich insect populations. Larvivorous air-breathing fish species such as snakeheads C. marulius and C. striatus and tilapia, O. mossambicus are ideal species for culturing in this system. This integrated system fetched 20-25% higher return compared to aquaculture alone.




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