As part of the outreach activity under the ICAR- Outreach Activity-I (Fish Feed), a day-long specialised training programme was organised on the request of Freshwater Fisheries Research And Training Centre (FFRTC), Directorate of Fisheries, Govt. of West Bengal at Feed Research laboratory of ICAR-CIFRI, Barrackpore. A total of 53 fish famers from 8 districts of West Bengal on 22nd December, 2016 attended to get acquainted with the principles of fish nutrition, feed formulation for nutrient balancing, ingredient selection, and hands on training on farm made feed preparation. The participants were also updated with the recent knowledge on feeding strategy and practices keeping in view on cost optimization and environmental consideration. Dr. M. A. Hassan Principal Scientist & PI, Outreach Activity-I welcomed the participants and elaborated on the objectives of this dedicated training programme on fish nutrition and feeding for production enhancement. Dr. B. K. Das, Director, ICAR-CIFRI, Dr. U. K. Sarkar, Head of Division, Reservoir and Wetland Fisheries, Principal Scientists , Dr. S. Samanta, Dr. Md. Aftabuddin and Senior Scientist, Dr. R. K. Manna, Scientists, D. K. Meena and Mishal P., and two officials from FFRTC, Kalyani, faculties of ICAR-CIFRI, Barrackpore and farmers were present on the occasion. Dr. B. K. Das, Director, in his remarks stressed upon knowledge based fish production system for better profit and sustainability. He also emphasised on the wider scope and better livelihood opportunity in inland fish production sector. Dr. Sarkar, highlighted the importance of supplementary feeding and cost effective feed formulation through locally available ingredients in inland open waters including reservoirs and wetlands for sustainable fish production and improved profit margin.
Technical session was comprised of theory classes on the concept of pond ecology, nutrient cycle and production potential by Mishal P.; Harnessing natural productivity and concept of poly-culture by D. K. Meena, Improving carrying capacity through application of manure and fertilizers by Dr. S. Samanta, Water quality monitoring and management for sustainable production by Dr. R. K. Manna, Locally available feed ingredients and their nutritional quality by Dr. Md. Aftabuddin and Principles of fish nutrition and Fish feed preparation and management by Dr. M.A. Hassan. The theory classes was followed by a hands on training on feed formulation with locally available ingredients, processing of ingredients and preparation of practical feed using low cost locally procured equipments. Operation of various machineries was demonstrated for moist feed, dry pellet preparation and extrusion pellet mill. Outreach materials such as leaflets and lectures material on fish feed formulation and preparation were distributed among the farmers. Finally, feed back from the farmers was taken, showing very high level of confidence and satisfaction developed through this specialised training programme. This training programme helped in enriching their knowledge and skill on different aspects of fish nutrition, feed development, preparation and feeding strategy for gainful and sustainable fish production.