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Kerala Shrimp Farmers Dive into “Indicus Revolution” as Native Species Thrives in Trial

Indian White Shrimp Makes a Splash: Successful Trial Diversifies Aquaculture in Kerala

The Indian white shrimp (Penaeus indicus) is making a comeback in Kerala’s aquaculture scene, thanks to a successful farming trial conducted by ICAR-Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA) under the Matsya Sampada Jagrukta Abhiyan scheme. This promising development could diversify species options for shrimp farmers and potentially combat a major disease threat.

ICAR-CIBA developed a “cleaned stock” of indicus shrimp, meaning they were bred disease-free, and provided them to farmers for a trial in their ponds. The results were impressive: the shrimp grew as fast as the popular P. vannamei species, reaching a size of 18.5 grams in just 93 days. They also achieved a high survival rate (around 90%) with minimal external aeration support, indicating resilience and adaptability.

One of the most exciting findings was the farmers’ observation that indicus shrimp seemed more resistant to white faecal disease, a devastating illness plaguing the industry. This potential advantage raises hopes for a more sustainable and disease-resistant shrimp farming future.

The harvest event in Kandagali village, Payyanur, was a testament to the collaboration between ICAR-CIBA, local authorities, and the shrimp farming community. Representatives from the Payyanur Municipality, Kerala Aquafarmers Association, Department of Fisheries, and neighboring farmers witnessed the successful harvest, generating enthusiasm for wider adoption of indicus shrimp farming.

Dr. Kuldeep K. Lal, Director of ICAR-CIBA, emphasizes the significance of this trial: “The successful demonstration of indicus shrimp farming opens up new avenues for species diversification in Kerala’s aquaculture sector. It has the potential to improve farmer incomes, enhance disease resilience, and contribute to a more sustainable shrimp farming industry.”

With its promising growth rate, disease resistance, and adaptability, the Indian white shrimp has the potential to become a game-changer for Kerala’s aquaculture. The successful trial paves the way for further research and development, with the aim of promoting widespread adoption of this native species. This could not only benefit farmers but also contribute to a more diverse and healthy shrimp farming ecosystem in India.

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