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Sri Lanka: Prawn farming needs modern technology by SANJEEVI JAYASURIYA February 11,2019   |  Source: Sunday Observer

Sri Lanka’s prawn industry is a lucrative business and a good foreign exchange earner, said Chairman and Managing Director of Blue Lagoon Aquaculture (Pvt) Ltd., Mohan Fernando, a long-standing industrialist. He ventured into the prawn industry in 1996 and started breeding using mother prawns captured (wild catch) from the sea.

The continuous release of cultured prawns into the surrounding water bodies and inbreeding as a consequence, caused the weakening of the wild brood stock and as a result the post larvae also became weak and more vulnerable to diseases. Growth has also slowed down triggering size variations.

Fernando said that the country’s prawn industry is over four decades and it is necessary to introduce domesticated brood stock with Specific Pathogen Free (SPF) cultures as the way forward. He undertook an in-depth study of the industry and practices adopted by other countries to overcome the problems faced by the farmed prawn industry. He travelled widely to prawn farming countries such as Thailand, Vietnam and India where the industry is flourishing today.

The outcome of his extensive studies spanning over five years was the conviction that Lanka’s prawn gene pool needs upgrading and revitalisating. To achieve this he plans to introduce SPF brood stock

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Years in Support of Small Scale Fishworkers (1986 - 2018)