Papua New Guinea
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FIRST FRESH WATER FISH HARVESTED IN KUBALIA

Most of the fresh water fish supplied at the local market in East Sepik Province was supplied by the people living along the Sepik River. However, this is not the case now as a village in the mountains of Kubalia in the Yangoru Saussia district can now supply fish at the market.

Over the weekend, Nuimiwia Agro Cooperative Society of Paparom Village made their first harvest of Tilapia in their inland fish farm and sold at the market, while some were shared among friends and family.

The Chairman of Nuimiwia Agro Cooperative Society of Paparom Village John Sivigru said, they started the Nuimiwia Inland Fish Farming project in 2022 through the guidance of a Marine Biologist Alois Wafy.

“We started the cooperative society in 2021 and in 2022 we started digging the fish ponds with our hands. We also hired machineries to build road down to the fish ponds with our own money.”

Chairman Sivigru explained that, after digging the ponds, National Fisheries Authority supplied them with fingerlings.

“We dig the fish ponds and National Fisheries Authority supplied us with 8000 fingerlings. Now we have 15 fish ponds and fish in the four ponds are ready for harvest.”

Mr Sivigru said despite the challenges of lack of funding support from the government and also sourcing water into the fish ponds, they managed to raise funds and purchase materials needed to source water from a well into the fish ponds.

The chairman and team made their first harvest and sales on Saturday.

“Saturday we made the first harvest, some sold and ate. We earned K526.00 from the 200 Tilapia sold.”

“We have more fish for harvest and sale in the coming weeks and months.”

The Chairman encouraged others to tap into inland fish farming as it takes only four months to harvest.

“I encourage people in my district Yangoru Saussia and other districts like Maprik and Wosera to start inland fish farming because if Frieda Mine operates, Sepik River will be polluted as well as fish supply will be affected, hence this will be our food security as well as source of income.”

Mr Sivigru said they will fix the breeding ponds and they will start breeding other species of fresh water fish as well.