Over 94 fish farmers from Ogal beach in Kisumu worst hit by death of fish calamity receive fingerlings worth Sh 2million and fish feeds worth Sh 1 million to help them re-stock.
Between the months of September and November last year, the lake Victoria fisheries witnessed a rare and devastating death of fish along the beaches.
During that period, hundreds of thousands of fish in cages died, leaving the fisher-folk shocked, stranded and discouraged.
However on Tuesday , it was a ray of hope for the fish farners after the county government carried out a distribution of fingerlings and fish feeds.
According to govenor Anyany Nyong’o, the fingerling support – a joint venture between the national and county governments will be used to out-scale the initiative to other beaches that were affected.
The loss due to fish kills within the county was estimated at Sh 884.8 million.
The highest losses were experienced by Kentila Farms and Lake Aqua Ltd at Sh 200,400, 000 and Sh4 138,000,000, respectively. Unfortunately, both are in Ogal beac
Nyong’o noted that of the 8 landing beaches reported to have experienced fish kills in the county, Ogal had the highest number of cage farmers who were affected, accounting for 85% of the loses.
The govenor during the distribution assured the fisher folks at Ogal and the entire county that will stand with them at all times.
” We are working on policies that will improve the fish farming, especially aquaculture and Blue Economy in general.We take this opportunity to welcome all investors keen on the fishing sub sector”.he said.
Nyong’o noted that with dwindling landings from capture fisheries, they have prioritized interventions towards promotion of development of aquaculture (Cage fish farming and land-based aquaculture).
Nyong’o said this include certified fish seed(fingerling) distribution, construction and rehabilitation of fish ponds and capacity building in modern aquaculture knowledge and skills.
During the catastropy last year, the national government joined the county in the battle and a Multi-Agency Team (MAT) headed by the Principal Secretary State Department for Blue Economy and Fisheries was formed.
The team was tasked with looking into issues of fish kills and report the findings and recommendations.
It was discovered that Low oxygen level was the main cause of fish kills either in cages or in the wild – emanating from decomposition of organic matter/pollutants due to increased nutrient enrichment within the lake.