Requirements for Fish Pond Site Selection and Construction

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The success not fish farming enterprise largely depend on the where the fish farm is located and the kind of pond constructed. Therefore site selection and building of appropriate fish pond to suit the land soil structure, environmental conditions and the kind of fish farming practice to be adopted.

Table of content

  • Introduction
  • Requirements for fish pond site selection and construction
  • Types of fish pond structure or system

Requirements for Fish Pond Site Selection and Construction

For homestead fish culture, the house backyard is suitable. Earthen/ concrete ponds, plastic or fibre tanks are suitable for homestead use. Soil at the site of the earthen pond should be able to retain water.

In commercial fish farming, the first requirement is the choice of a suitable land for the establishment of the fish farm.

Such a land must be sited near water with adequate topography for the pond construction. The water source can be river/ stream, spring, well or borehole. The water must be free from pollutants. Water in the medium for culturing fish; as such , the supply of water must be guaranteed throughout the culture period.

The land should not be too hilly or too flat. A slightly depressed marshy land that can retain water for a long time is ideal for pond construction.

In sandy soil, the water retention capacity is very low, while a soil that has very high proportion of clay above 40% composition will make the pond turbid (concentration of suspended solids) for fish.

A suitable soil is that which has a good proportion of clay and loam in the ratio of 40:60%

Once a suitable land has been acquired, a registered Surveyor should survey it and a topographic map produced to permit the design of fishponds and other structures.

The design of  a fish farm varies with the manner of land. If the slope is gentle enough (a valley of 1:2 slope) to permit channels of water from the stream or river into the farm, the construction of a storage reservoir may not be necessary.

In most gently sloping valleys, channels may not be practicable hence it might be necessary to block the course of water to raise the water level to permit diversion into ponds lined along (parallel to) the course of the river or stream.

After conducting a feasibility study and planning the type and size of ponds to build on the site selected, construction work can start

Depending on the nature of the surrounding land, the construction could be manual r mechanical. In marshy lands the use of heavy equipment is not advisable.

The main parts of any fish pond to be constructed are the dam walls (dikes), the water inlet and outlet system. Pond dikes must be well compacted to prevent seepage.

Concrete ponds are preferable in areas where the soil is too sandy for earthen ponds or enough land is not available or the pond is required within the living premises.

Cost of construction of concrete ponds vary with the size of the pond, location, availability and cost of labour, source of water and cost of materials such as cement, sand, gravel, plastic pipes, solid blocks etc.

Types of Fish Pond Structure or System

1. Drainable and Un-drainable Ponds

Ponds aquaculture is the use of earthen impoundments, with or without drainage infrastructure incorporated to grow fish. Ponds are the most widely used structures for commercial aquaculture production. Ponds for aquaculture production are generally static with limited water exchange but can be modified for suitable use. Ponds include earthen ponds, concrete pond structure, dams, burrow pit, etc. Pond structure can be drainable, that is, water can be easily drained from inbuilt structure or un-drainable,  that is, no inbuilt water draining structure, but water can be flushed out through pumping machine or manual bailing.

2. Flow through System

Flow-through systems are generally used for the intensive production of fish. A flow-through system may include earthen ponds, tanks or raceways. They require considerable amount of water to be pumped or gravity-fed from an adjacent waterway usually rivers or stream passed through the earthen ponds, tanks or raceways and then discharged back into the source environment with little or no treatment.

3. Recirculating aquaculture system

Recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) have limited water exchange (typically up to 10% per day) and reuse the culture water. Mechanical and biological water treatment is used to maintain quality. RAS generally requires less area and water than conventional aquaculture,  allows higher stocking densities and provides greater control over the culture environment. If the system is well operated RAS may provide a very secured and healthy environment for fish culture.



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