Herald: With a dip in traditional lake fish harvest, Curtorkars worried about returns

With a dip in traditional lake fish harvest, Curtorkars worried about returns

15 May 2019 05:42am IST

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15 May 2019 05:42am IST

Report by
Team Herald

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MARGAO: Persons involved in harvesting fresh water fish from lakes and water bodies in Curtorim especially those depending upon imported variety are a worried lot and wonder whether they will even recover the bid amount they paid to bag the right to harvest the water body and sell the fish caught.

Normally the lakes in Curtorim are harvested after the harvesting is done as the water removed from the water body is pumped into the fields where the crop has been harvested and so far only Maitollem near Carmi chapel and the Curtorim lake in front of the church has been harvested.

According to Curtorim Sarpanch Rui Menezes who is also active fish harvester the catch at Maitollem was abundant and the bidders recovered the Rs. 3 lakhs they paid at the auction at the first harvest itself and another harvest is still awaited.

“This time around there was only indigenous fish bred in the lake as the usual ‘Katla’ and ‘Rohu’ breed that used to be introduced was not available with the Fisheries Department,” said Rui while disclosing that they had introduced some ‘Chonak’ spawn that was caught in the nearby areas.

“We got ‘Chonak’ weighing around 2.5 kg, which was sold for Rs. 1,500 per piece and people readily purchased this fresh fish,” he said adding that they also harvested plenty of catfish called tigur and also tilapia.

However while Rui is happy, others are quite apprehensive as they did not get the spawn of ‘Rohu’ or ‘Katla’ that used to breed well and give them good returns. Moreover, this time they are forced to depend upon only the local fish that bred naturally in the water bodies.

Antonio Dias who is involved with the Curtorim lake in front of the Curtorim church is having a positive mindset and is hopeful to recover the Rs. 1.5 lakhs paid for the harvesting rights of that lake. “We did introduce’ Chonak’ spawn but the ‘tigur’ existing in the lake ate them and we have some huge tigurs this year that got us a good price,” he said.

He said they even tried to get the spawn of ‘Rohu’ and ‘Katla’ from Hospet but did not succeed and had to depend on the local fish breeding naturally. “Tigurs have had an exceptional growth this year and we have really big sized ones,” he said.

Andrew Luis who is associated with the Raitollem was hopeful that the ‘Chonak” introduced in that lake would grow well and bring them the desired returns. In any case whether the local fish brings the returns or not will be revealed this year as the high yielding ‘Rohu’ and ‘Katla’ breed were not introduced in the lakes this year.
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