The Department of Agriculture-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (DA-NFRDI) implements its FY 2020 refocused projects in line with the directives of DA Secretary Dr. William D. Dar. This step is towards the enhancement and expansion of aquaculture practices in the Philippines which aims to increase fisheries productivity, competitiveness, and profitability while ensuring sufficiency of fish food supplies amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Under the Aquaculture Research and Development Programs are twenty-two refocused projects that are divided into two sub-areas: 1) the collaborative projects between NFRDI and BFAR National Centers, and 2) Technology Promotion projects.

Fifteen (15) projects are under the NFRDI and BFAR National Center Collaborative Agreement. These projects totalled PHP 23M in funding. To this date, these projects have been finalized by the respective project leaders through the comments and supervision done by the NFRDI Technical Working Group. Six BFAR National Centers submitted their research projects. These are:

National Integrated Fisheries Technology Development Center

1. Siganid culture (Siganus guttatus and S. vermiculatus) and hybridization for quality and increased seed production

Study 1. Cross breeding of S. guttatus and S. vermiculatus and its larval, nursery and grow-out culture trials

Study 2. Genetic profiling of S. guttatus and S. vermiculatus and hybrids

Study 3. Effect of temperature manipulation on the reproductive activity of siganids

  • Slipper oyster (Crassostrea iredalei) fattening and quality improvement in ponds using Skeletonema spp. Diatoms

National Freshwater Fisheries Technology Center

3. Refinement of Induce Breeding and Larval Rearing of Mudfish Channa striata

4. Technology Verification of Low Cost Feeds in Fry Rearing of Tilapia

5. Morphological and Molecular Identification, Culture and Breeding Evaluation of Jungle Perch (Aguning) Kuhlia rupestris in Captivity

6. Genotyping of Oreochromis niloticus species and other improved strains of tilapia at BFAR-NFFTC towards marker assisted selection in breeding and production

7. Development of Induce Breeding and Larval Rearing of Climbing Perch Anabas Testudineus

8. Molecular identification of bacterial tilapia diseases and other emerging bacterial pathogens in freshwater fishes

National Inland Fisheries Technology Center

9. Larval Rearing of Naturally Bred Therapon (Leiopotherapon plumbeus or Ayungin) and Goby (Glossogobius giuris /Biya) With Focus on Diet and Nutrition

National Brackishwater Fisheries Technology Center

10. Resource Assessment and Technology Verification of the Hatchery and Nursery Rearing of Mangrove Crab in the Philippines National Seaweeds Technology Development Center

11. Sea Based Culture of Laboratory Grown Kappaphycus alvarezii propagules

12. Cryopreservation of Spores of Some Economically Important Red Seaweeds in the Philippines

13.Technology Verification on the Land and Sea-based Culture of Sargassum

National Mariculture Center

14. Growth and Survival of Tiger Lobster (Panulirus ornatus) in Nursery Marine Floating Cage at Different Stocking Densities

15. Growth and Survival of Milkfish from Fry to Fingerlings at Different Stocking Densities

Seven projects fall under the Technology Promotion. These projects are towards the application of verified fisheries technologies on production, nursery rearing, among others. The NFRDI-National Centers (BFRDC, FFRDC, and MFRDC) initiated these projects with the aim to provide materials and technical assistance to selected cooperators/beneficiaries. A total of PHP 5.6M was allotted for the fulfillment of these projects, which include:

1. Technology Promotion of Bangus Nursery Rearing in Brackishwater Ponds

2. Technology Promotion of Tilapia Nursery Rearing in Brackishwater Ponds

3. Increased Fish Productivity Through Technology Promotion and Agricultural Support to Fisherfolk

4. Technology Promotion on the Seed Production of Common Carp (Cyprinus carpio) for Stock Enhancement

5. Technology Promotion on the Culture of Tilapia and Milkfish Using Extruded Floating Feeds

6. Technology Promotion on the Production of Bigger Sized Tilapia and Milkfish Fingerlings for Cage Culture

7. Technology Promotion on the Milkfish Fingerlings Production in Ponds and Cages

Overall, these projects are bold manifestations of the zealousness of DA-NFRDI in aligning its current projects with the eight paradigms established by Dr. William Dar. These refocused projects address the modernization (diversification of fish food and introduction of agripreneurship) and farm consolidation (mechanization and cooperative farming) in the fisheries sector. (TBuico)