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Monday, October 18, 2021

Chandigarh Admin releases Gambusia near Sukhna Lake for mosquito larva control

The department breeds this fish from April to September and then releases it in water bodies from October onwards, as per requirement, every year.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh |
October 2, 2021 12:23:54 am
The name "mosquitofish" was given because the fish eats mosquito larvae, and has been used more than any other fishes for the biological control of mosquitoes. (File)

CHANDIGARH’S ANIMAL and Fisheries Department on Friday released Mosquitofish (Gambusia) in water bodies located in Nagar Van near Sukhna Lake to control the spread of seasonal vector-borne diseases like malaria and dengue.

Vector-borne disease is very common in the post rainy season, when mosquitoes breed very rapidly, especially in stagnant water, causing the spread of diseases like malaria and dengue.

The western mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis) is a species of freshwater fish, also known commonly, if ambiguously, as simply mosquitofish. The name “mosquitofish” was given because the fish eats mosquito larvae, and has been used more than any other fishes for the biological control of mosquitoes.

The fishes were released under the guidance of Dr Vijay Namdeorao Zade, secretary of animal husbandry and fisheries, in the presence of Dr Abdul Qayum, IFS, and deputy conservator of forests, Manish Kumar Lohan, director of the Department of Animal Husbandry and Fisheries, and Dr Kanwarjit Singh joint director of the department were present on this occasion. Officials said gambusia fish will also be released in other stagnant water points in the coming days by the department.

Dr Kanwarjit Singh, the joint director of Animal Husbandry and Fisheries, said, “The aim is to control the breeding of mosquito species that can transmit viruses. Only the female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes spread the dengue virus. The adult Gambusia fish can eat around 100 to 300 mosquito larvae per day. This fish is very small and inedible which makes them an excellent biological tool for mosquito control because they consume the larvae before they have a chance to develop into adult mosquitoes.”

Dr Kanwarjit further added that the public may approach the Fish Seed Farm for collecting mosquitofish and release them in stagnant water points, artificial fountains, and ponds inside or outside their houses free of cost.

Dr Abdul Qayum, appreciated the efforts of the Animal Husbandry Department for playing an important role in coordination with the Forest Department for conservation of the ecology of Sukhna wetland and other water bodies in Chandigarh. Manish Kumar Lohan said that the Gambusia released in the water bodies is being produced at Fish Seed Farm at the regulatory end of Sukhna Lake, under the UT Fisheries Department.

The department breeds this fish from April to September and then releases it in water bodies from October onwards, as per requirement, every year.

The officials informed that in the northern region, the Government Fish Seed Farm, Chandigarh, at the regulatory end, Sukhna Lake is the only farm which breeds the rare fishes and supplies to other departments like Forest, Health and to the general public free of cost.

 

 

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