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Fast growing catfish Fast Growing and Hybrid African Catfish

Fast growing hybrid catfish for Africa

Fast Growing and Hybrid African Catfish" is developed to enhance freshwater farming in Sub-Saharan Africa. This technology involves the selective breeding and hybridization of two catfish species to create a superior hybrid offspring (Hetero-Clarias). The process of hybridization requires hormone-induced egg release in female catfish and the collection of seminal fluids from male catfish, subsequently combined to produce the hybrid.


This technology is TAAT1 validated.


Scaling readiness: idea maturity 7/9; level of use 7/9

Cost: $$$ 0.025—0.09 USD

per gram of Catfish fingerlings

ROI: $$$

2500—3500 USD

Feed inputs for 8600—10000 Catfish fingerlings


Open source / open access


  • Scarcity of Quality Fingerlings.
  • Challenges in Reproduction and Energy Expenditure.
  • Quality of Water and Environmental Health in hatchries.
  • Lack of Knowledge and Skill in hatchries Operations.
  • Difficulty to maintain specific temperature ranges for optimal growth.


  • The Hetero-Clarias hybrid exhibits superior growth rate, higher survival, and greater hardiness compared to the parent species.
  • Certified hatcheries provide a secure means to increase local supply of fast-growing and hybrid catfish.
  • The produced hybrid catfish is sterile, allowing it to channel energy primarily into growth, resulting in better feed conversion and growth rates.
  • Knowledgeable and skillful hatchery operators, with potential training for fish farmers in processes like hormone-induced egg release and handling seminal fluids.

Key points to design your business plan

The fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish technology may be of interest to Fingerling Multiplier, and users (Fish farmers, aggregators).

Fingerling Multiplier

Producing fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish technology offers an opportunity to enhance aquaculture productivity, and improve food security.

To efficiently multiply fingerlings, it's essential to: 

  • Select or construct a pond in an open place free of flooding with direct sunlight, 
  • Provide a reliable source of quality water, 
  • Purchase matured and fecund improved breed of broodstock or fingerlings  
  • Supply well-balanced feed that is free of aflatoxin and contaminants.

A certification for propagating fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish varieties, adhering to the licensing requirements set by each country in Sub-Saharan Africa for producing and selling certified fingerlings locally.

Your potential customers include Fish farmers, aggregators, as well as development projects, government agencies, and NGOs. 

Establishing robust partnerships with potential customers is crucial for the success of your fingerling production business.


Utilizing fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish technology presents a solution to effectively manage pests and diseases, enhance fish yield and quality, and promote sustainable aquaculture practices, thereby improving the livelihoods of diverse farming communities.

As key partners, you require suppliers of fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish fingerlings.

Since the technology is accessible in various countries such as Benin, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, it's imperative to consider delivery costs and potential import duties.

The cost structure varies, with the price of one gram of fast-growing and hybrid African Catfish fingerlings ranging from USD 0.025 to 0.09 per gram.

In Kenya, five- to six-week-old fingerlings of common catfish are sold at 0.12 USD per individual. At a stocking rate of 600 fish per cubic meter of water, this cost is 72 USD. Hybrid catfish fingerlings can cost 2-2.5 times more than the non-hybridized breeds. Feed for a one-hectare pond stocked with 8,600 fast-growing catfish is about 2,500 USD, while feed inputs for 10,000 hybrid catfish are approximately 3,500 USD, making feed the greatest recurrent production input.

You need to assess the profitability achieved through the utilization of this technology.


Positive or neutral impact

Adults 18 and over
Positive high
The poor
Positive medium
Under 18
No impact
Positive high

Positive or neutral impact

Climate adaptability
It adapts really well
Adaptability for farmers
It helps a lot
It doesn't hurt them
Carbon footprint
It doesn't reduce emissions at all
It makes a little difference
Soil quality
It doesn't harm the soil's health and fertility
Water usage
It uses the same amount of water

Countries with a green colour
Tested & adopted
Countries with a bright green colour
Countries with a yellow colour
Egypt Equatorial Guinea Ethiopia Algeria Angola Benin Botswana Burundi Burkina Faso Democratic Republic of the Congo Djibouti Côte d’Ivoire Eritrea Gabon Gambia Ghana Guinea Guinea-Bissau Cameroon Kenya Libya Liberia Madagascar Mali Malawi Morocco Mauritania Mozambique Namibia Niger Nigeria Republic of the Congo Rwanda Zambia Senegal Sierra Leone Zimbabwe Somalia South Sudan Sudan South Africa Eswatini Tanzania Togo Tunisia Chad Uganda Western Sahara Central African Republic Lesotho
Countries where the technology has been tested and adopted
Country Tested Adopted
Benin Tested Adopted
Cameroon Tested Adopted
Côte d’Ivoire Tested Adopted
Democratic Republic of the Congo Tested Adopted
Kenya Tested Adopted
Malawi Tested Adopted
Nigeria Tested Adopted
Tanzania Tested Adopted
Uganda Tested Adopted
Zambia Tested Adopted

This technology can be used in the colored agro-ecological zones. Any zones shown in white are not suitable for this technology.

Agro-ecological zones where this technology can be used
AEZ Subtropic - warm Subtropic - cool Tropic - warm Tropic - cool

Source: HarvestChoice/IFPRI 2009

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals that are applicable to this technology.

Sustainable Development Goal 2: zero hunger
Goal 2: zero hunger
Sustainable Development Goal 3: good health and well-being
Goal 3: good health and well-being
Sustainable Development Goal 8: decent work and economic growth
Goal 8: decent work and economic growth
Sustainable Development Goal 12: responsible production and consumption
Goal 12: responsible production and consumption

  1. Selection of Fertile Broodstock: Choose female catfish weighing 1 to 4 kg and at least one year old. Select male brooders weighing 2 to 3 kg, capable of fertilizing eggs from 20 females.
  2. Egg Maturation Process: Inject female catfish with ovaprim hormone or use freshly extracted pituitary to promote egg maturation.
  3. Egg Fertilization: Collect seminal fluid (milt) from male brooders. Fertilize eggs in a narrow container with water temperature maintained above 25°C. Eggs hatch within 20 to 36 hours.
  4. Larval Care: Larvae do not require feeding until three days after hatching, as they feed on their yolk sacs. Provide aeration for active fry, ensuring they receive sufficient oxygen.
  5. Feeding Regimen: Feed larvae for 5-8 days with cultured zooplankton or finely powdered shrimp, fishmeal, or special feed. 
  6. Water Quality Management: Maintain high water quality for fish health. Administer monthly antibiotic treatment to ponds to reduce infection risks. Ensure pond water pH remains between 6.5 and 9.0; apply limestone if pH drops below 6.5 and total alkalinity and hardness fall below 10 ppm. Maintain dissolved oxygen concentrations at 5 ppm or higher for a successful farm.

Last updated on 22 May 2024