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Existing scenario and culture techniques of Pangas (Pangasius hypophthalmus)

in Rupandehi and Nawalparasi districts of Nepal

Article · January 2017

DOI: 10.5251/abjna.2017.


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4 authors, including:

Shailesh Gurung Keshar Khatri

Tribhuvan University, Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Nepal Agriculture and Forestry University


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ISSN Print: 2151-7517, ISSN Online: 2151-7525, doi:10.5251/abjna.2017.
© 2017, ScienceHuβ,

Existing scenario and culture techniques of Pangas (Pangasius

hypophthalmus) in Rupandehi and Nawalparasi districts of Nepal
Shailesh Gurung1*, Keshar Bahadur Khatri2, Shivam Jaisawal2 and Sudip Pandey2
Assistant Professor, Tribhuvan University, Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Bhairahawa,
B.Sc. Ag., Tribhuvan University, Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Bhairahawa, Nepal
*Corresponding Author Email:


The study was done to know about the scenario and culture techniques of Pangasius in
Rupandehi and Nawalparasi districts of Nepal, and to know about its profitability. The survey
included only 5 farmers owing different pond area for Pangasius culture. Pre-tested questionnaire
was used for respondents selected on purposive selection basis. The different socio-demographic
information, pond characteristics and culture techniques were studied in the survey. B/C ratio of
the three farmers was found to be between 1 & 2, but in other two, it was less than 1 because of
the less number of fish stocked. The t-test value obtained using two paired variables (total feed
and total production) was 0.000126268 which is less than 2.776, the tabulated value of t at 0.05
level of significance and 4 df. Also the t-test value obtained using two paired variables (total cost
and total return) was 0.584577 which is less than 2.776, the tabulated value of t at 0.05 level of
significance and 4 df. Hence this showed the profitability of Pangasius culture in these two
districts of Nepal.
Keywords: Pangasius, culture technique, B/C ratio, pelleted feed, production cost

INTRODUCTION: cakes without any regular fertilization. There is a

scope for intensification by promoting on- farm feed
Fish is known as a staple food for over a billion people
using locally available ingredients and other farm
in the world. It is well known for its lean and white
resources, in addition to regular fertilization of ponds
meat with low fat having low cholesterol levels. Diet-
with urea and diammonium phosphate (DAP).
conscious people, especially in the Western countries,
Considerable improvement in fish farming by
are shifting from red to white meat (such as chicken)
increasing the production can be achieved through an
and then towards seafood, whereas consumption of
effective extension program.
aquatic organisms is a tradition in Asia and many
other countries that are adjacent to sea. Because of One of the fast growing types of aquaculture of the
the shifting consumption behavior coupled with ever world is considered as pangas farming. Pangas has
increasing population, the demand for fish is steadily been proven particularly adaptable for intensive
increasing. At present, it is estimated that almost 160 production system. This catfish is especially native to
million ton of fish captured and farmed - is produced the Mekong River of Vietnam and has been introduced
annually, out of which only about 106 million ton is throughout the region as an aquaculture species.
used for human consumption (FAO, 2006; De Silva Pangas is commonly known as Iridscent shark, sutchi
and Devy 2010). Directorate of Fisheries catfish in Thailand or pla sawai, Patin in Malaysia, tra
Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives or basa catfish in Vietnam, baikhi in Nepal belongs to
has estimated that total fish production (catch and the family Pangasiidae respectively. P.
culture) in Nepal is around 46,000 ton for 2008. hypophthalmus is a highly migratory riverine fish
Similarly, FAO statistics also show an impressive species having long distance migrations over several
double digit annual growth. However, fish farming is hundred kilometers between upstream to downstream.
concentrated in southern plain region (90%) and And it is one of the fastest growing fresh water fish
mainly in earthen ponds (95%). Average productivity species in overall agriculture branches (Csávás,
of ponds has been achieved at 3.6 t/ha with limited 1994). It recognize as a scale less skin, long slender
amount of inputs and no commercial feed. Existing body, wide mouth and curvature (not sharp) located in
system includes occasional feeding of rice bran and quite low position. It has the ability to feed on a variety
Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

of food items (omnivorous). They are sensitive to light. experienced facing rapidly growing aquaculture is the
They move in cyclic form and are bottom feeders in availability of fish feed, since feed cost is the largest
nature but can be trained to eat at the surface. And operating cost of semi-intensive fish farming. Feeding
they are easily agitated by sound also.The cost often accounts more than 50% of the total cost of
aquaculture potential of this species in tropical regions production in intensified culture systems (Sehagal &
of the world outside of SE Asia would appear to be Toor 1991; De Silva 1992).
excellent. Until now there have been no efforts to
produce Pangasius as food in the Western
Study area: Research was conducted in Nwalparasi
Hemisphere. Pangas (Pangasius hypophthalmus) is
and Rupandehi district of western region. Nawalparasi
the best due to its easy culture system, favorable
district is situated at 27˚31’59’’ N Latitude and 83˚40ʹE
weather condition for culture and high market demand 0
longitude and Rupandehi district is located at 27 30'
(Sarder et al.1994).One of the major problems is o
0" North latitude and 83 27' 0" East longitude.

Site Selection

Fig. 1: Site Selection

Survey design and information collection: sources was analyzed by using timeline, trendline,
Personal contact was done to share knowledge and social mapping and other tools of participatory rural
experience of pangas culture. Information on appraisal. The Microsoft excel was, B/C ratio and t-
scenario and culture technique of pangas fish was test was done for quantitative and qualitative data
collected through pre-tested structured analysis.
questionnaires from the key informants selected
B/C ratio = Gross return / Total cost
purposively in the project area.
T-test was also done to analyze the feasibility of
Key informant selection: Renowned pangas fish
pangas production by taking two paired variables
grower was selected on the basis of their popularity
total feed & total production per kattha and total cost
in the village. Administration of questionnaire was
and total return per kattha.
Descriptive statistic like frequency count, percentage,
Methods and technique of data analysis:The
chart and diagram was made by using MS Excel.
information collected from primary and secondary

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

RESULT AND DISCUSSION allocated for the farmers was very less. The
maximum area allocated by the farmer was 0.85 ha
Area and number of ponds of concerned farmers:
within 2 ponds, where as all other farmers had only 1
As this was the only first year of production of pangas
pond for pangas cultivation covering are 0.25, 0.6
for these farmers the area and number of ponds
and 0.05 ha.
2.5 0.9
2 0.8

Area of pond (ha)

No. of ponds
0.6 0.6
1 1 1 1
0.5 0.2
0 0.05 0.05 0
Khem Punya Bdr. Santosh Ambarish Rabindra
Narayan Chaudhhary Shrestha Patel sahani
Name of farmers

No. of Ponds Total pond area (Ha)

Fig. 2: No. and area of pond for pangas cultivation by the concerned farmers
Fish Stocking: The wide variation was seen in the were 51.8 and 150 kg. Similarly the size of the
size and quantity of the fish stocked as it was done fingerlings stocked by other three farmers was 1, 1.5
by the farmers only for the experimental purpose. and 3 and hence the total weight of fingerlings
Among five farmers, two stocked large sized fishes stocked was 19.5, 54 and 110 kg respectively.
i.e. of 6 inches and the total weight of fish stocked
160 150 7
140 6 6 6
Weight of fish stocked

Size of stocked fish

120 110
3 54 51.8 3
40 2
19.551 1.5
20 1
0 0
Khem Narayan Punya Bdr. Santosh Ambarish Patel Rabindra sahani
Tharu Chaudhhary Shrestha
Name of farmers

Total wt. (kg)

Size of fish(inch)

Fig. 3: Number and weight of fish stock

Feeding: Out of five farmers, four used pelleted feed. cake (MOC) at the rate of 60, 38, 30 kg/kattha. One
Four farmers used pelleted feed the most at the rate farmer used the chicken, boiled egg as the extra
of 700, 521, 666 and 800 kg/kattha in 6 months. Rice protein diet and molasses as energy diet at the rate
bran was given by 4 farmers at the rate of 204, 400, of 433, 112 and 412 kg/kattha respectively in 6
395, 60 kg/kattha in 6 months. One farmer did not months.
use rice bran at all. Three farmers used mustard oil

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

Table 1: Total feed given by the concerned farmer per kattha (1 kattha=333.33m

Name Total feed (Kg/kattha)

Khem Narayan Tharu 964
Punya Pd. Chaudhary 959
Santosh Shrestha 1352
Ambarish Patel 756
Rabindra sahani 800

Hence total feed used by the farmers is 964, 959,

1352, 756 and 800 kg/kattha.



Pellet (Kg/kattha)
Qty of Feed

800 Molasses (kg/kattha)

521 433 Chicken (kg/kattha)

600 700 Boiled Egg (kg/kattha)
MOC (kg/kattha)
112 666
400 38 800 Rice bran (kg/kattha)

200 60
400 395
204 30
0 60 0
Khem Narayan Punya Bdr. Santosh Shrestha Ambarish Patel Rabindra sahani
Tharu Chaudhhary
Name of farmer

Fig. 4: Feeding practices adopted by the farmers

Pangasisus hypopthalmus is an omnivorous species. protein level of the diet applied to different treatments
It feeds on fish, crustaceans and vegetable matter. and highest specific growth rate (SGR) 1.60 % day-1
The commercially manufactured pelleted feed is the ( Sayeed et al, 2009).
most effective way to cultivate fish, although feed
Fertilizer Application: All the farmers used DAP,
costs are extremely high (Ahmed, 2007). Rice bran,
urea and lime for their pond management.
MOC, Cattle and buffalo manure is commonly used
as a source of nutrients for fishponds. On average, Lime was used most by all the farmers at the rate of
the quantity of feed used per ha per annum were 15, 2, 15, 10.5 and 15 kg/kattha in 6 months. Urea
22,370 kg, 13,010 kg and 5,790 kg in intensive, was used by all the farmers at the rate 2.4, 1, 1, 2
semiintensive and traditional feeding practices, and 2.3 kg/kattha in 6 months. DAP was used by all
respectively. It is reported that thai pangus the farmers at the rate of 1.2, 1, 0.5, 1.5 and 2
responded towards higher growth with the increasing kg/kattha in 6 months.

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44


Rate of fertilizer application

1.2 2
2.4 0.5
1 2.3
15 15 15 DAP (kg/kattha)
5 10.5
1 Urea (kg/kattha)
0 2 Lime (kg/kattha)

Name of farmer

Fig. 5: Rate of fertilizer application by the farmers

Nitrogen and phosphorous in the form of inorganic feed cost, labor cost, re-excavation cost and
fertilizer are applied to fish ponds to stimulate algal miscellaneous cost which includes cost of pond
growth to increase zooplankton production. Farmers management, motor, travel cost, etc. Among five
are now aware of the benefits of using inorganic farmers, three have expended most in the feed. The
fertilizers such as urea, TSP and others. (Barman, expenditure in feeds is 44%, 46%, 40%, 9% and
Little and Edwards, 2002; Thompson, Sultana and 21%. The expenditure in labor done by the farmers is
Firoz Khan, 2005). Lime is used by the farmers to 35%, 37%, 33%, 56% and 29%.The expenditure
improve water quality and to increase productivity. made by the farmers in the stocking of fish is 12%,
Farmers who practice intensive pangas aquaculture 14%, 15%, 18% and 41%. The 41% expenditure was
apply small quantities of lime to their ponds on a made by one of the farmers because he stocked the
monthly basis to improve water quality (DoF, 2005). fish of size 6 inches and average weight 700gm. The
expenditure in the re-excavation is 3%, 2%, 5%, 6%
Production Cost: We divided the production cost of
and 3%. The miscellaneous expenditure is 6%, 1%,
farmers under different headings as fingerling cost,
7%, 11% and 6%.

Fig. 6: Production cost distribution Fig. 7: Production cost distribution of

Khem Narayan Tharu Punya Bdr. Chaudhary

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

Fig. 8: Production cost distribution of Fig. 9: Production cost distribution of

Santosh Shrestha Ambarish Patel

Fig. 10: Production cost distribution of Rabindra Sahani

Feed costs generally constitute the highest single 2.12, compared with 1.76 in semi-intensive and 1.64
operational cost, accounting for 76 percent, 69 in intensive feeding. It is reported that the average
percent and 59 percent of total costs in intensive, annual stocking density of fingerlings for intensive,
semi-intensive and traditional feeding practices, semi-intensive and traditional farms were estimated
respectively. Statistical analysis indicated that inputs at 35 900, 23 575 and 12 065 per ha, respectively.
are inefficiently used in intensive feeding. The highest (Ahmed, 2007).
benefit-cost ratio is found in traditional feeding at

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

90000 77929 81515 79035 81605

Total production cost Rs./ kattha

70000 60416
Khem Narayan Punya Psd Santosh Ambarish Patel Rabindra
Tharu Chaudhary Shrestha sahani
Name of farmers

Fig. 11: Total cost of production per kattha

The total money spent in production was higher Production:The average annual yield of pangas was
because of the excessive use of the pelleted feed. estimated at 8,343 kg/ha in 2005. The highest
The total production cost of all the farmers is Rs. average annual pangas production per ha pond was
77929, Rs. 81515, Rs. 79035, Rs. 53612 and Rs. recorded in intensive farming (13,945 kg) (Ahmed,
81605 per kattha. 2007). During the survey period, out of five only 2
farmers had harvested the fish completely.

Fig.12: Harvesting pattern of Fig.13: Harvesting pattern of

Khem Narayan Tharu Santosh Shrestha
Those two farmers had sold, consumed and gifted 88%. The quantity gifted is 4% and 3% and the
the fish after harvest. The quantity sold is 93% and quantity consumed is 3% and 9%.

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

500 447.5
400 350
300 213
Khem Punya Psd Santosh Ambarish Rabindra
Narayan Chaudhary Shrestha Patel sahani

Total Production(kg/kattha)

Fig. 14: Total production per kattha of Pangas

The production of pangas by 5 farmers is 447.5kg, production of pangas by two farmers was obtained
350kg, 581kg, 79.2kg, 213kg per kattha. The less due to less stocking of fish.





Khem Narayan Punya Bdr. Santosh Ambarish Rabindra
Tharu Chaudhhary Shrestha Patel sahani
Name of farmer

Total feed (Kg/kattha) Total Production(kg/kattha)

Fig. 15: Comparative chart showing amount of feed and production per kattha
• Feasibility of pangas production was also • Therefore the result is non-significant so we
analyzed by T-test by taking two paired accept the hypothesis with the inference that
variables (total feed and total production) the testing is reliable.
• 0.000126268 is the value obtained from t- B/C Ratio Analysis:
A method for analyzing the desirability of public
• Here 0.000126268 ˂ 2.776 (tabulated value works, projects, or any other project where benefits
of t at 0.05 level of significance and 4 d.f.). and costs can be quantified is called B/C ratio. The
B/C ratio of all the farmers on per kattha basis was
calculated and following results were obtained.

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

Table 2: B/C ratio of different farmers

SN Name Total Cost Total return
(Rs/kattha) (Rs/kattha) B/C ratio
1 Khem Narayan Tharu 77929 129775 1.66
2 Punya Pd Chaudhary 81515 96250 1.180764277
3 Santosh Shrestha 79035 145250 1.837793383
4 Ambarish Patel 60416 19008 0.314618644
5 Rabindra sahani 81605 53250 0.65

 Feasibility of pangas production was 30 kg/kattha. Farmers used Urea, DAP to

analyzed by T-test by taking two paired maintain phytoplankton in pond and lime was
variables (total cost and total return). used to maintain the water quality. Feed and
labor occupied about 43% and 38 % of the
• 0.584577 is the value obtained from t-test. total cost.
• Here 0.584577 ˂ 2.776 (tabulated value of t • Highest production was obtained from
at 0.05 level of significance and 4 d.f.). Santosh Shrestha because he used protein
rich feed like boiled eggs and chicken in
• Therefore the result is non-significant so we addition to bran and molasses. BC ratio of
accept the hypothesis with the inference that three farmers (khemnaryan, Punya Psd.and
the testing is reliable. Santosh ) was more than 1. 1.66, 1.18, 1.83,
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION 0.31, 0.65 are the bc ratios obtained from five
farmers, Khemnaryan Tharu, Punya Pd.
• There were few pangas fish farmers in Chaudhary, Santosh Shrestha,Ambrish Patel
Nawalparasi and Rupandehi district. Out of and Rabindra Sahani respectively. Feasibility
five farmers, three were from Nawalparasi of pangas production was also analyzed by
and two from Rupandehi district. Among five T-test. 0.584577 is the value obtained from t-
farmers, one had two ponds and other had test by taking two paired variables (total cost
only one pond. All farmers were practicing and total return).
mono culture system. Two farmers, Ambrish • The breeding is not done in Nepal, however
and Sahani, had very low stocking densities we came to know the complexity at hatchling
of 74 and 166/katha respectively. They stage. The cannabolism is the major problem
stocked large size fish of 6 inches while other during this stage. The fishes eat each other
three farmers, Khemnaryan Tharu, Punya at this stage, if sufficient feed is not available
Pd.Chaudhary and Santosh Shrestha at this time. Thus puddling is regularly done
stocked small size fingerlings (1-3 inches) in at the bottom of pond so the fishes cannot
higher stocking densities @ of 1950, 2235 see each other and hence mortality is also
and 2962 respectively. controlled. Also feed rich in protein should
• Out of five farmers, four farmers also be given to check cannabalism.
(Khemnarayan, Punya Pd, Patel and • From the result it was concluded that pangas
Sahani) used pelleted feed. Four farmers is fast growing fish species which can be
used pelleted feed the most at the rate of reared in low oxygen condition at high
700, 521, 666 and 800 kg/kattha in 6 months stocking densities. It is easy to culture and
respectively. Bran was given by 4 farmers can be cultured by feeding homemade feeds
(Khemnaryan, Punya Pd., Patel and like rice bran, MOC, vegetable etc. Water
Santosh) at the rate of 204, 400, 395, 60 exchange is the one of the important
kg/kattha in 6 months. Santosh Shrestha did component for the production of pangas in
not use rice bran at all. Three farmers, winter season. Fish fed with higher protein
Khemnaryan, Punya Pd and Pattel, used content grows at faster than other feed. They
mustard oil cake (MOC) at the rate of 60, 38, start to give return from 6 months of stocking.

Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 2017, 8(2): 35-44

If the high quality fingerlings are provided in • De Silva, S.S. and Davy, F.B. (1992) Fish nutrition
time, no of pangas grower will be higher in research for semi-intensive culture system in Asia.
Nepal. Research on pangas is great Asian Fish. Sci., 5: 129-144.
opportunity to agriculturist of Nepal because • De Silva, S.S. & Davy F.B. (2010) Aquaculture
successes in Asia: contributing to sustained
there is no any research on pangas at all. development and poverty alleviation. InS.S. De
Silva & F.B. Davy, eds. Success stories in Asian
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT aquaculture, pp.1–14. London, Springer.
• DoF (Department of Fisheries) (2005) Saronika,
The authors wish to acknowledge the sincere thanks National Fisheries Fortnight 2005, 7-21 August,
to the Aquaculture department of Institute of 2005. Dhaka, Department of Fisheries, Ministry of
Agriculture and Animal Science. Similarly, special Fisheries and Livestock. 132 pp.
thanks are extended to all the project staffs, fish • FAO (2004) The state of world fisheries and
aquaculture. Rome: Food and Agriculture
farmers, market actors and service providers who
Organisation of the United Nations.
actively participated in different phases of this work. • Sarder, M.R.I., Mollah, M.F.A., Ahmad, G.U. &
Last but not the least, we would like to extend our Kibria, M.G. (1994) Effects of supplemental diets
sincere thanks to Dr Murshed Khondker E-Jahan, of the growth of Pangus (Pangasius pangasius,
Worldfish Center, Bangladesh for his untiring support Ham.) in nets cages. Bangladesh Agric. J. Fish.,
and effort provided in ANEP. 22(2): 303-307.
• Sayeed MAB, Hossain GS, Mistry SK and Huq KA
(2008) Growth performance of thai pangas in
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