Best management practices for integration of water and fisheries resources in lowland ecosystems

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Best Management Practices for
integration of water and fisheries
resources in lowland ecosystems
Kevin Fitzsimmons, Ph.D.
Professor, University of Arizona
Visiting Fulbright Professor, AIT, Thailand
President, World Aquaculture Society
International Workshop on Integrated Water and Fisheries
Resources Management in Developing Countries
Sept. 20, 2004

Introduction
Vastlyincreasing demand on aquatic
resources
Need to protect water supplies from
pollution and degradation
Require improvements in water use
efficiencies
Polyculture and integrated farming
systems will lead the way

Introduction
 Polyculture

and integrated systems in
Asia are thousands of years old.
 These highly efficient systems and the
healthy diets they produce are a primary
reasonfor the high populations in East
and South Asia.
 Now we need further enhancements and
applications to other production systems,
especially for new species, larger growing
systems and in developed countries

Introduction
 Over

40 million hectares are irrigated
globally.
 Irrigation water is well suited for
aquaculture and aquaculture effluent is
ideal for plant crops.
Multiple-use of water is an important
aspect of sustainable aquaculture systems.
 Fish effluents should be used as input to
another crop.

Benefits
 Water

is already controlled.
 Either pumped from groundwater or
diverted from natural or man-made
watercourses.
 Reservoirs and canal structures are easily
adapted as locations for fish culture.
 Water is usually of high quality, oftenfrom the same source as drinking water.
 Most water fit for drinking and/or
agriculture, is fine for fish.

Aquaculture Effluent Management
 US

- EPA is in process of regulating all
US aquaculture wastes
 Field crop irrigation is accepted as a
“Best Management Practice” by EPA
and several states

Pond culture integrated to field crop
irrigation
Fish farm with surrounding cropsCrops with small irrigation ponds

On farm storage ponds
 Growing

in ponds or cages in ponds.
Cages in
reservoir
in Arizona

Cages in Washington
farm pond

Sprinkler irrigation from Washington
fish pond

Research Projects - Integration
of aquaculture and agriculture
 1.

Irrigate cotton crops with water
from catfish/tilapia/koi ponds and
well water
 2. Measuredifferences in water
quality, nitrogen and phosphorus
application & cotton height and
yield
 3. Determine economic impact

Research Projects - Integration
of aquaculture and agriculture
 First use of water for semi-intensive pond
culture.
 Pond filled with well water.
 Catfish, tilapia and koi stocked at 7,000 ha
 Second use to irrigate and fertilize cotton
in summer, barley inwinter.
 Replicated plots irrigated with well water
and pond water with and without chemical
fertilizers.

Road

404 F.E. + S.F.

403 W.W. + S.F.

160 ft

Barley
(Cotton)

402 W.W.

401 F.E.

IRRIGATION PIPES

15 ft

Road

(Larger Pond)
- not to scale

304 F.E. + S.F.

303 W.W.

Barley
(Cotton)

302 F.E.

301 W.W. + S.F.

204 W.W.

203 F.E.

Barley(Cotton)

202 W.W. + S.F.

201 F.E. + S.F.

104 W.W + S.F.

103 F.E.

102 F.E. + S.F.

101 W.W.

Well

Road

small pond (not to scale)

siphon
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Fish Pond

Floating Cages

PUMP

Barley
(Cotton)

Pond culture to crop irrigation-trials

PVC

Stocking fish into pond and cages

The Field

Pond culture to crop irrigation-trials

The
Cotton
Yield Results - Integration of aquaculture

25
20
15

Well
Pond

10
5

be
r
Se
pt
em

us
t
A
ug

Ju
ly

Ju
ne

M

ay

0

A
pr
il

Total N applied with water (kg/ha)

and agriculture
 Water pH reduced from 8.3 to 8.0
 Added 19.7 kg/ha N to 45 kg/ha used
in standard fertilization schedule.

Results - Integration of aquaculture

3
2.5
2
Well
Pond...
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