Accepted 12th January, 2015
This paper examines problems and prospects of small-scale fish farming in Minna Agricultural Zone of Niger state, Nigeria, and its implications on increased fish food security. Both primary and secondary data were used to collect data. The main instrument used for collecting primary data was structured questionnaire. Multi-stage sampling technique was employed in selecting 65 fish farmers drawn from the sampling frame obtained from Agricultural Development Project (ADP) contact farmers in two local government areas, namely Bosso and Chanchaga LGAs’ respectively. It utilized descriptive statistics in data analysis. Results obtained revealed a High literacy level (95.4%) which is adequately enough to support information on technology use. Results further revealed that the major constraints encountered by the farmers are scarcity of quality brooding stocks (26%); paucity of capital (19%) and high costs of feeds (17%). Lesser perceived problems are high labour costs; poor storage facilities and mortality rate due to diseases. Prospects of fish food security could be enhanced by tailoring policies towards the setting up of commercial pelleted and floating catfish feed mill and modern hatcheries in the State, the provision of adequate infrastructure, cheap and available credit facilities and expansion of extension services. These would go a long way to solving the most serious constraints to small-scale fish production in the study area. Therefore, it recommended government participation in fish farming to boost the quantity of fish available for consumption.
Keywords: Fish farming; problems; prospects; fish food security; Niger State