How to start catfish farming in Nigeria — Catfish business is among the lucrative businesses currently making waves in Nigeria. Therefore, it’s no surprise that you also want to venture into catfish farming. The catfish business simply involves the breeding and rearing of catfish on a large scale for commercial purposes. It is a simple animal husbandry-based business that you can begin anywhere, and you don’t even need a huge capital. You can start your catfish farming at home or on a farm. In this article, you will learn how to start a catfish business in Nigeria and what kind of benefits the business can bring you.
How To Start A Catfish Business
Starting a catfish business is not as difficult as it seems, below is a guide on how to go about it.
1. Conduct market research and understand the catfish industry in your location
The first step to establishing a catfish business in Nigeria is to understand the level of catfish demand in your area. Do you have many competitors? Do people in your area love to buy catfish, but maybe the location is far? Analyze the price of catfish per kilo in your area and the best period in demand. Generally, there are different types of catfish, including blue catfish, channel catfish, etc., and they feed on food and eat worms and insects. You should understand the various types and determine the type you want to rear.
2. What’s the size of the farm you want?
Secondly, the next step in the catfish business is choosing the farm size you want. You will be required to either purchase a tank that’s if you want to start a small-scale catfish business or build a concrete catfish pond also, depending on your capital. Catfish are of different sizes, so since you are a beginner, we recommend you use juvenile size, then nurture them with good quality food, and you should expect to earn good profit for it. Why we advise you to start with the juvenile size is that it will save you the cost of feeding, you will only need to feed them for a few months, then you can sell them.
3. Know how much you will spend to establish the business successfully
The most crucial factor when starting a catfish business is your capital; this will determine the size of the company you wish. The cost will generally depend on the season and the market. The key things you will include, which are also the most expensive, are the fish pond, the fish, the feed and the water supply, and whether you need to open drainage. You can do your research online or go around to ask questions from the people that are already in the business. Consider all the essential things you need for the business, including your annual production plan or half a year expenses.
4. Familiarize yourself with your competitors
Catfish is one of the businesses that are in demand, so ensure you know the people that are already in the business, who are also your competitors. You should know the customers they deal with, the type of fish they sell, and their capabilities. Also, you should learn how people respond to the business; if you improve the services, can you attract more customers? Learn the necessary strategies you can adopt to thrive in the competitive market.
5. Ensure there is proper drainage in the area
One major thing you should note when setting up your catfish business is drainage. You will need to change the fish water constantly, so without proper drainage, it may become a nuisance to you and the community. Whether it’s in your home or another place you hire specifically for the business, ensure there is proper drainage in the area.
6. Build your catfish pond
You should also determine the size of the catfish pond you want before building. You can choose a large or small pond; the essential thing to note is to choose a perfect location for the business. Building a small pond for many fish can be a disaster, and unless you are experienced with building ponds, hire a professional to do the work for you. You can also begin the business in a plastic tank to observe how well it goes before going for a large scale.
7. The feeding phase
There are different categories of fish feeds, which all depend on the size of the fish. You should purchase quality feed that will nourish your fish. It’s also essential to have a constant water supply in the area so you can change their water too. You may sometimes be required to change their water after two days, depending on the excretion products they secrete. Also, it’s recommended to use borehole water because tap water or rainwater might be dangerous for the fish.
8. Beware of fish diseases
Even after following necessary measures like good drainage and changing their water, you should also beware of fish diseases. Be highly observant; whenever you start to notice inactivity, change in the watercolor, open sores, bloated body, or any abnormal sign, you must seek veterinarian assistance instantly. Ask essential questions regarding the fish business or, if possible, attend a short-term lesson on how to care for fish so you can avoid disastrous situations.
9. Keep track of the income
Have a book or journal where you record every transaction related to the business. Also, open a separate account where you will be keeping the money rather than combining it with your regular account.
There you have it. Above is a guide on how to start a successful fish farming business. Follow the steps carefully for the best results.
Benefits Of Starting A Catfish Business
Let’s look at some benefits of starting a catfish business in Nigeria.
1. It’s easy to maintain
Unlike other businesses, catfish is pretty easy to maintain, and they don’t suffer illnesses often. All you need is a good water supply and drainage.
2. It’s profitable
Catfish is also one of the most profitable businesses in Nigeria. You can earn income from every aspect of it; you can dry, smoke, and fry the fish, and you can eat them even if they die. It is in high demand and has a rapidly growing market.
3. It has no environmental pollution
Unlike poultry, catfish is a quiet business that doesn’t make noise. There is growing evidence that you can even plant oranges near your catfish farm, where the catfish water can reach the soil and be a source of fertilizer for the oranges.
4. Reduces unemployment
Every day, the rate of unemployment is significantly increasing. So by establishing a fish business, you aren’t only employing yourself but also providing a source of business for other people. Nowadays, fish farming is among the businesses that youths are advised to venture into so they can earn passive income.
Beginning a catfish business encourages diversification of income streams for farmers, especially those who are currently focused on crop farming.
Catfish is one of the most rewarding and easiest businesses you can start in Nigeria. If you are looking for a business that has a high potential for success, then look no further than this business. However, seek proper knowledge of the business before going into it, above we have mentioned important steps you can take to establish your catfish business successfully.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much is a kilo of catfish in Nigeria?
As of December 2022, the average price of catfish kilo in most areas across Nigeria is around 1500 naira to 2000 naira.
How long does it take to grow a catfish business in Nigeria?
Generally, the duration it takes for them to grow depends on the size you are rearing. For example, if you choose the smallest fingerlings, it will take them around four to five months to reach 500-700g.
What are the essential requirements for starting a catfish business in Nigeria?
To establish a catfish business in Nigeria, you need to find a suitable location for the fish farm, access good water, get quality catfish fingerlings, establish a proper feeding plan, care properly for the fish, and adopt effective marketing strategies to sell the catfish.
What is the average capital a person can establish a catfish business with?
Starting a catfish business requires thorough planning; if you want to meet all the requirements adequately, you should budget around 500k Naira to 4 million Naira. Which solely depends on the land, the size, and the production. If you want to start a small-scale business, even 100k naira might be sufficient.
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