Scientists from the National Bureau of Fish Genetics Resources have discovered new varieties of ornamental shrimp in the Lakshadweep coral reef environment, which will be a boon for the growing ornamental fish industry in the country.
Scientists said that the ornamental shrimp industry could gain substantially from the discovery. At present, an ornamental shrimp costs about ₹1,000 a piece. The move now is to reduce the cost to spread the culture of ornamental shrimp keeping.
Both conservation of the species and livelihood can be ensured by relying on steady supplies. Twenty women from Agatti on the Lakshadweep islands are being provided training now in rearing the new species so that they will be able to establish backyard units for supplies in the future.
The discovery will help boost marine ornamental aquaculture and aquarium keeping, which is a multi-million dollar industry. The demand for marine invertebrates such as soft corals, sea anemones, shrimps, crabs, and sea lilies was increasing, said a communication from the group of scientists involved in the discovery.
At present, the marine ornamental trade is worth around 362 million dollars and its value is increasing at an average rate of 14% a year.