A technique developed by the Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture, Chennai, will help the State meet the table demand.

Though the Pearl spot (Karimeen) is Kerala's own fish, a helping hand has now come from Tamil Nadu to boost the production of this great delicacy for meeting the table demand. The initiative has come from the Chennai-based Central government establishment, Central Institute of Brackishwater Aquaculture (CIBA).

CIBA has developed a new technique that enables Pearl spots to spawn in artificially created environments. Though the State government had drawn out an elaborate programme to increase the production of Pearl spots under the Matsya Kerala scheme and offered attractive subsides for Pearl spot farmers, an acute shortage of the Karimeen larva continues to exist. This is mainly because Pearl spots mate for life and build nests to spawn. Nests are built only in congenial natural surroundings. The State also lacks the technical knowhow for making Pearl spots spawn under artificial conditions. CIBA has now solved the problem for the State.

Last week the first batch of Pearl spot fries were produced by CIBA. Its distribution was organised as a grand function in Chennai. Basudeb Acharia, Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, inaugurated the distribution by handing over the Pearl spot larvae to a team of Fisheries Department officials from Kollam led by Deputy Director of Fisheries K.J. Prasanna Kumar last Friday. Twenty Members of Parliament took part in the programme. Others from the Fisheries Department here who took part in the programme were Sofia Maragaret Joseph, Rashael Fernandez, Priya J, and representatives from women's self-financing societies.

Keywords: pearl spots

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