In the developing world, more than 1 billion people depend on fish for most of their animal protein, and another 1 billion people depend on livestock. Poor people, especially women and children, typically eat very little meat, milk and fish. This contributes to nutrient deficiencies and poor physical and cognitive development for children and poor health and livelihood outcomes for adults.
The CGIAR Research Program on Livestock and Fish started in January 2012. It aims to increase the productivity of small-scale livestock and fish systems in sustainable ways, making meat, milk and fish more available and affordable to poor consumers across the developing world. Genetics is one of the three technological components of the Livestock and Fish research program. A genetics team meeting was held on 30-31 July 2012, at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), Nairobi.
This CGIAR Research Program’s vision is for the health, livelihoods and future prospects of the poor and vulnerable, especially women and children, to be transformed through consumption of adequate amounts of meat, milk and/or fish and from benefiting from the associated animal source food value chains. CRP3.7 aims to realize this vision by seizing upon an unprecedented opportunity to integrate and exploit three ongoing revolutions – the Livestock Revolution, the Blue Revolution and the Gene Revolution.
The integration of agriculture and aquaculture as a means of intensifying resource use and improving the productivity of many current farming practices in Southeast Asian and African countries is discussed. A brief account is given of work undertaken by ICLARM in Malawi and India regarding the improved use of marginal lands to integrate crops, vegetables, trees, livestock and fish, outlining also the various problems involved in the extension of such integrated fish farming systems.
Full results of 18 major livestock-fish farming experiments in which tilapia were grown using excreta from chickens, ducks and pigs over a 3-year period. Includes economic analyses and forecasts and 26 pages of raw and summary data.
There is a vast potential for Asia's numerous and needy small-scale farmers to enjoy the benefits of integration of aquaculture into farming systems. This publication attempts to create a framework for an interdisciplinary approach to research and education in integrated farming - a fusion of agriculture and aquaculture sciences.
Despite setbacks that included typhoons and floods, and experimental animals that once ate precious data sheets, the most intensive research on integrated farming in Southeast Asia was successfully concluded at the end of 1981. It was carried out by scientists and technicians from ICLARM and the Freshwater Aquaculture Center (FAC), Central Luzon State University, Philippines, using specially prepared ponds at the FAC.
Bangladesh Government and non-government organizations have in recent years undertaken research to study ways of optimizing food production from available water resources. This research has resulted in the development of techniques for practicing (i) integrated rice fish farming, either concurrently or in rotation with rice in rainfed, irrigated and deepwater rice ecosystems; and (ii) integrated poultry-fish farming in homestead ponds. The integration of fish culture with rainfed and irrigated rice farming has resulted in increase in fish production and rice yields.
In this paper we present livestock breeding developments that could be taken into consideration in the genetic improvement of farmed aquaculture species, especially in freshwater fish. Firstly, the current breeding objective in aquatic species has focused almost exclusively on the improvement of body weight at harvest or on growth related traits. This is unlikely to be sufficient to meet the future needs of the aquaculture industry.
Intensive and integrated resource management, where field crops, vegetables, trees, livestock and fish production are combined through efficient reuse of wastes, residues, by-products and external inputs, offers a potential avenue towards a productive and ecologically balanced agriculture. The ECOPATH model software provides important insights into the structure and function of global aquatic ecosystems.