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Alba Iulia
Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Fish farmers appeal to government to allow them to grow Niloticus Tilapia

Economy Fish farmers appeal to government to allow them to grow Niloticus Tilapia

Inside one of Lusaka's Fish markets
Fresh fish

A Samfya based Fish Farmer has appealed to government to consider reviewing the policy that restrict fish farmers in Luapula Province from growing Niloticus Tilapia, a species predominantly found in the Nile river.

Dr. Faustin Mwape says there is need to review the policy to allow fish farmers in the Province grow the fish species saying doing so will allow fish farmers realize the full benefits of fish farming.

Dr Mwape points out that the restriction was justifiable in past when the province had a lot of fish in its natural water bodies but that the current depletion levels of fish needs a breed like Niloticus Tilapia that will yield the required amounts of fish from fish farmers.

In an interview with ZANIS, Dr. Mwape who is also Abashila Investment Technical Director says allowing Fish Framers in the Province to grow Niloticus Tilapia is only way they will compete with those on Lake Kariba and Kafue River who are already growing the breed.

He observed that Niloticus Tilapia has a number of advantages and cited the feed convention rate for Niloticus Tilapia which is 70% compared to 20% for ordinary breams.

Dr. Mwape further explains that once fish farmers in the Province are allowed to grow Niloticus Tilapia the fish industry in the province will grow as the fish grows faster and breeds more than the ordinary breams.

He further says allowing fish farmers in the province to grow the breed will go a long way in returning the province’s status of being the major fish supplier.


  1. This is a good suggestion because there is no doubt we rely heavily on fish as source of protein food. But our rivers have not been able to sustain the supply of this food source, that is why we have periods of fish ban from rivers. So any quicker way of farming fish should surely be welcome.

  2. What would be the effect on our local species? Years back some foreign fish was introduced in Lake Vitoria of Uganda and this fish ended up eating the local species which led to the extinction of some types. The same has happened in Australia where a certain type of fish has grown in numbers leading to eating more food than the local fishes. Yes it’s a good idea the above examples not withstanding.

  3. The rationale behind this restriction is so that our species do not get extict.We need to reserch our bream species native to luapula rivers & lakes for them to also grow faster.The native bream varieties of Zambia are testier & i believe more nutritious.

    • Accepting anything without proper assessment can cause problems in future just as accepting the Chinese wholesomely is bringing confusion in our labor and trade industry.

  4. The said fish is already being bred at Kariba Dam and Kafue River. I think that’s enough proof that there is no negative effect on local breed. Matter of fact, they are bred in cages which means no mix with local breed

    • The breeding of these fish in Kariba has caused the EXTINCTION of our local bream type there. Zambians are very dull, always thinking imported things are better!

  5. Please govt do not allow introduction of non native species in the river or Luapula as they will wipe out everything especially Tilapia which is not only least nutritious but also easy to raise as it eats anything including human sewer that’s why the shady Chinese farmers love it.

  6. This is a vexing issue which arguably is dependent on government environmental protection policies versus investment! Indigenous fish species are a wildlife natural resource as good as the over protected animals in our parks and as concerns cited in comments above careful consideration to biodiversity is critical for at some point it could turn out to be a saver for research purposes and tourism! The Nile tilapia (niloticus) has ‘infested’ the fish farming industry for the long attention accorded it from the Nile river basin historical times as the tropical fish of choice while species of say the central Africa rivers went ignored! The views expressed divide us on where we fall on the biodiversity spectrum and investment. However the indigenous tilapia species have a unique character in…

  7. contd…..that they are unique to the Zambian rivers. While encouraging investment a robust system that preserves our natural resources should be in place.

    • With cooperation between the fishermen and government, our fish can multiply to the old days. Ordering strange fishes is a quick solution but not a lasting one. Please our fishes are not impotent all it requires is to make them more productive and protected against primitive fishing methods.

  8. I think the govt has a good reason not to introduce it in the province. Even the dr. saying the govt had a justifiable reason in the past because there were many species, to me re-enforces that we should not stock this new breed. The reason that there were MANY species so ONE new one could not be introduced, spells a lot of background info which is not clear to this decision.

  9. Luapula tilapya is the best and cannot be compared to any of these GMOs! Luapula Tilapya tastes better than GMO HH and HaJayJay and UPND species! Disclaimer: I am not a man eater nor a Three Mansion!

  10. Do not introduce fish from a different ecosystem without the scientific, agricultural and Zambia environmental agencies doing research. Evasive species will destroy the native fish stocks if they are not compatible.

  11. If you want to bring your farm large scale you will have follow real experience and research. Fish farm consultants Alphalapia.com have had many profitable farms to show off.

  12. We are already feeding on American WHITE chickens. The local MARATHON chicken with its poor yield characteristics is still here. But I wonder how many Zambians would be EATING chicken as often as we do TODAY if we depended only on LOCAL chicken. While the local chicken takes 1 year to mature the WHITE chicken takes 6 weeks.

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