Srinagar: Scientists at SKUAST-K have introduced an exotic South Asian fish breed to Kashmir, which has high ornamental value across the world.
Division of Fish Genetics and Biotechnology, Faculty of Fisheries, SKUAST-K has successfully conducted breeding of Zebrafish (Danio rerio) a renowned ornamental freshwater fish.
Dr. Irfan Ahmad Head of Division of Genetics and Biotechnology, Faculty of Fisheries SKUAST told the Kashmir Monitor that the breeding of the fish variety was conducted in April under controlled conditions.
“This fish variety, which is not very common in Kashmir, was being imported from high-temperature zones. Our experiment began in April and we successfully bred two adults. Right now we have larvae of Zebrafish at SKUAST -K,” he said.
Dr. Irfan said the breeding activity of Zebrafish was carried out by manipulating the photoperiod (period for which a fish receives light) and temperature conditions.
“The eggs were successfully collected and their hatching process was observed. The methodology can be used for broodstock and seed production of Zebrafish in the valley. The experiment was conducted by the B.F. Sc 4th year student, Saif-ullah under the guidance of scientists,” he said.
Native to South Asia, Zebrafish is a popular aquarium fish and is exported in huge quantities from south Asian countries to the rest of the world.
Dr. Irfan said the fish species have a huge scope to boost the economy of the valley’s aqua-preneurs. “Many young entrepreneurs in Kashmir are investing their money in this venture as it ensures great income generation and involves low investment aided by high social acceptance. Zebra Fish also being a fish of ornamental value can now be reproduced in cold water conditions and offers tremendous scope for young aquapreneurs of Kashmir,” he said.
Pertinently, Zebrafish is also a model for various researches in pisciculture for its unique developmental and biological characteristics.
The fisheries department of Jammu and Kashmir this year is also introducing American and Vietnamese fishes to boost aquaculture and improve livelihood in the valley.
As per the officials two fish varieties of carp species Pangasius and Pacu will be cultured by the department this year.