What actions do shrimp farms take between cycles?

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As you know, the number of shrimp growing cycles per year varies worldwide. Weather conditions and available technology determine the number of cycles. Some areas grow shrimp twice a year, while others grow shrimp three or four times a year. Tropical areas have more opportunities for shrimp farming. In these areas, shrimp can be grown up to three or four times a year because the weather conditions are more favorable. However, extreme seasonal changes in other areas may limit shrimp farming to two seasons per year.

But have you ever wondered what shrimp farmers do between cycles? You might say that after harvesting, they rest and shut down the farm until the next cycle begins. Make no mistake! Shrimp farmers must prepare for the next cycle as soon as one cycle ends; shrimp farmers will never be successful farmers if they sit back and do nothing until the next season begins.

You may be wondering, other than preparing for the post-larvae, what else should be done between cycles? Join us in this article to answer that question.

Pond Preparation

Preparing ponds for the next cycle is the most important action shrimp farmers should take at the end of a cycle. This should be done immediately after the end of the cycle. Pond preparation can be costly to the grower, but failure to do so will result in much higher costs.

Earthen pond preparation consists of several steps. Each step is briefly described below.

1- Drain and clean the pond: The first step in the pond preparation process is to drain the pond water. After harvesting, the water in the ponds is completely drained and then the washing process begins. Washing the ponds removes the black soil and sediments left over from the previous cycle.

2- Dry the pond: After washing, the bottom of the pond should be allowed to dry completely in contact with sunlight. To prevent water from entering the pond, the inlet and outlet should be closed. The drying process usually takes 15 days and deep cracks will appear on the bottom of the pond. This will disinfect the bottom of the pond and remove all harmful organisms.

3- Remove black soil and other sediments: After the pond bottom is cracked by sunlight, the cracked soil must be removed by special machines. Black soil usually accumulates in the center of the pond due to the presence of aerators during cultivation, and it is not difficult to remove.

4-Sample pond soil: It is necessary to sample the pond soil after removing the black soil from the pond bottom. The amount of organic matter in the soil is determined by taking soil samples from a depth of 10 cm.

5- Re-washing the pond bottom: Now it’s time to wash the pond bottom again. Fill the pond with 40 cm of water and drain it after one day. This will remove any remaining sediment from the bottom of the pond.

6- Plow the pond and adjust the slope of the bottom: Plowing has several benefits, including releasing toxic gases and increasing soil-air contact. At this stage, the slope of the pond bottom is also adjusted. The slope of the pond should be toward the outlet of the pond so that the water can be easily changed.

7- Liming: Liming the pond is done for several reasons; to adjust the pH of the soil, to prevent the decomposition of iron in the soil, to prevent the deposition of toxic substances, to increase the strength of the surface layer, and to destroy harmful and pathogenic organisms.

8-Equipment Installation: This step involves the installation of the required equipment such as catwalks and water inlet equipment. The number of catwalks is determined by the area of the pond.

9- Water filling: Filling the ponds is usually done in two stages. In the first stage, the ponds are filled to about 50 cm and then fertilization is done. Fertilization is used to fertilize the pond water. It creates natural food for the post-larvae. After fertilizing the water, it is time for the second stage of water filling. At this stage, the ponds are filled with about 100 cm of water, which is the last step of pond preparation. The ponds are now ready to receive post-larvae and begin a productive cycle.

Other actions required between cycles

Preparing the ponds is one of the most important tasks to be done between cycles, but there are several other actions that, if ignored and postponed, will not bring good results.

– After harvesting, it is necessary to remove all aeration equipment and automatic feeders from the ponds. After cleaning, they should be stored in a covered area.

– Equipment such as walkways, feeding trays, and nets should be cleaned and stored in a suitable place after removal.

– Water pumps, generators, and machinery should be cleaned and repaired as necessary. This equipment should be maintained according to the manufacturer’s instructions and should not be placed in a wet location.

– Instruments used to measure water quality, such as salinity and pH meters, must be completely disinfected and stored in an appropriate location.

– All structures, water inlets and outlets, paths, walls, etc. must be carefully inspected and repaired as necessary.

The proper timing of the necessary actions between the two cycles is very important. Negligence and carelessness in preparing the farm will result in wasting time, increasing costs, and lacking proper efficiency.

Farmers who have strict rules and plans to prepare their farms are more successful and profitable than their colleagues.

In addition to the above, what other actions do you think should be taken between cycles? Share your knowledge and experience.




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