The New Indian Express , 04 February 2006

Aquashow gives boost to ornamental fish rearing

KOCHI: The increasing number of visitors at the third India International Aquashow 2006 (February 2-7, 2006) at the Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium at Kaloor here confirms the fact that ornamental fish rearing is getting a boost like never before.

“The ornamental fish business is definitely on the move,” says K.R. Pushpangadhan, Travancore Aquapets, Cochin.

“Our business per year amounts to about Rs 35 lakh. While puffer fish, puntius denizoni, puntius melanampics, ticto and angel fish are favourites in foreign countries, Malayalis have a special liking for goldfish, gowrami and carp.”

However, ornamental fish rearing as a hobby is no picnic, he says. “Genuine interest for fish is the sine qua non of rearing ornamental fish. A lot of patience and care are needed.’’

“Fish should be fed at the right time in right amounts. Over-feeding of fish is harmful to their health, sometimes even leading to their death. A basic understanding of the nature of the fish will be beneficial for those who consider ornamental fish rearing as a serious hobby.’’

More than 2,000 ornamental fish in about 200 aquariums are exhibited in 55 stalls at the Aquashow. Institutions such as MPEDA, CMFRI, CIFT, CIFNET, NIO, IFP, FSI, CIFRI, Agricultural University, Cochin University, and fisheries departments of several colleges in Kerala as well as more than 30 ornamental fish breeders are participating in the show.

MPEDA has showcased five varieties of shark and 10 varieties of angel fish such as black angel, platinum angel (silver), lace angel, marble angel and marble whale angel.

The two varieties of goldfish - ordinary oranda and redcap oranda - are a sight for sore eyes. Puntius denisoni, popularly known as ‘Miss Kerala’, are also displayed.

Dealers in aquariums and aquarium accessories from Kerala and Tamil Nadu are exhibiting their latest wares in the Aquashow.

The show is on from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. The ticket fare is Rs 25 and Rs 5 for adults and school students respectively.