Fish Farming in Nigeria

Among the agribusiness, commercial fish farming in Nigeria is very popular. Fish farming is also an established lucrative business. And the demand of catfish is increasing continuously.

Among all the fish species, catfish farming has a great demand in Nigeria. You can start fish farming in small scale for fulfilling your daily family demands or for earning some extra cash with your regular income.

How to Start Fish Farming in Nigeria

Fish farming has great opportunities in Nigeria and you also can go for large scale commercial production. Here we are discussing more about commercial catfish production in Nigeria.

Fish Species

There are numerous species of catfish around the world. All of those species are not suitable for farming according to the weather and climate of Nigeria.

A few of those can be used for commercial fish farming in Nigeria. Clarias gariepinus, Heterobranchus bidorsalis, Heterobranchus hybrid (Heteroclarias), Clarias nigrodigitatus, Heterobranchus spp, Clarias spp etc. are common and most popular catfish species in Nigeria for commercial fish farming business.

Farming Method

Concrete tanks and fingerling outdoor systems both are very suitable for catfish farming. Most species of catfish are cannibals.

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So, you have to take proper care during sorting them as outlined by their size. In case of fingerling outdoor culture, you have to prevent the predatory insects.

You can ensure their protection by covering the tanks with mosquito nets. This will keep the predatory insects away from your fish.

Polyculture of catfish with other common fish species like tilapia fish also very popular in Nigeria.

Polyculture of catfish in tanks with tilapia or other fish species ensure proper use of supplementary feed and higher production.


For successful fish farming and better production in Nigeria, you have to feed the fish good and nutritious supplementary fish feed.

Always ensure sufficient availability of amino acids like arginine, methionine, lysine and crude protein in their feed. Fishmeal is a great source of crude protein.

You can also use some low cost conventional or unconventional animal by-products and plant residue in fish feed. Groundnut cake, soybean meat etc. are Plant residue those can fulfill the nutrient requirements of catfish.

Nowadays, most of the fish farmers of Nigeria are using pelleted floating feeds. This types of food ensure all necessary nutrients for fish and help to increase growth rate and production.


Generally, artificial breeding through hormonal induction is used for catfish. After successful breeding, you have to take special care of the fry during the first week.

During this time you can feed the larvae zooplankton. The main problem with catfish is their cannibalism. So, keep the different aged and sized fish separate from each other.

Fish farming is a great business idea in Nigeria. And the demand of catfish is increasing rapidly. Because, it is a great source of nutrition and food. And there is already a suitable market available.

As a developing nation, fish farming can play a great contribution in the national income in Nigeria. The government have to create more and facilities for spreading fish farming business throughout the Nigeria.

Frequently Asked Questions

People ask many questions about fish farming in Nigeria. Here we are listing the most common questions about this lucrative business, and trying to answer them. Hope you will find your answer. Don’t hesitate to ask us if you have more questions.

Is fish farming a profitable business in Nigeria?

Yes, commercial fish farming is a very profitable business in Nigeria. You can start this business for making money.

How to start fish farming in Nigeria?

Starting a commercial fish production business in Nigeria is very easy and simple. You can easily start this business if you follow the steps mentioned below.

  • First of all, make an effective business plan.
  • Then choose a very good location for your farm.
  • Ensure a good source of water is available near your pond.
  • Make one or several ponds depending upon your land.
  • Select the right fish species for your production. Consult with some existing farmers in your area before selecting the fish species.
  • Purchase healthy fingerling or juveniles from good supplier.
  • Feed your fish with good quality and nutritious food.
  • Provide them with required medications.
  • And always try to take good care of your fish and monitor their health on a regular basis.

How much does it cost to start a fish farm in Nigeria?

Actually, it’s not possible to tell the exact amount. Because exact costs depends on numerous factors such as land cost, type of pond, size of the pond, number of stock, type of production, equipment cost and other facilities. Generally, the cost is between ₦0.5 and ₦4 million.

Which fish is best for farming in Nigeria?

Catfish is the most farmed fish species in Nigeria. It is highly popular and grow relatively faster as compared to many other fish species.

How profitable is fish farming business in Nigeria?

Commercial fish farming is a very popular business in Nigeria. You will get your invested money back very soon. Please consult with some existing farmers in your area to know more about the amount of profits they make from this business.

What is the problem of fish farming in Nigeria?

There are some problems in fish farming business in Nigeria. Common problems are high feeding costs, low water quality, shortage of improved seeds, inadequate technical management etc.

What is the most consumed fish in Nigeria.

Most popular and most consumed fish species in Nigeria is Catfish.

What fish is popular in Nigeria?

Catfish is the most popular and mostly consumed fish species in Nigeria.

What is the demand for fish in Nigeria?

Nigeria’s total demand for fish is 3.6 million tonnes annually.

What are the challenges facing fishing industry in Nigeria?

There are some problems in fish farming business in Nigeria. Common problems are high feeding costs, low water quality, shortage of improved seeds, inadequate technical management etc.

How much is 1kg of fresh catfish in Nigeria?

Depends on numerous factors and can vary from place to place. Generally, the price of live catfish is between ₦1500 and ₦2000.

Where is the largest fish market in Nigeria?

The Oluwo fish market also known as the Epe fish market is the biggest fish market in Lagos state. It is located in Epe, Lagos State, Nigeria.

What is the largest fish farm in Nigeria?

Dickem Farms is the largest fish farm in Nigeria that deals mainly in the production of aquaculture products such as fish feed, machines for fish feed production, fish meal, herbal fish supplements, collapsible mobile fish ponds and water purifiers.

Does Nigeria export catfish?

Currently, Nigeria exports about 100 metric tons of catfish yearly to the US, Canada, and Europe.

How much is tilapia in Nigeria?

Depends on numerous factors and can vary from place to place. Average price is ₦18,00 per 1 kg.

How long does catfish take to grow in Nigeria?

African catfish is an enormously fast-growing species, when raised in intensive aquaculture. It has been reported that 40 to 60 days are needed to grow fry to 20 g. After that, the grow-out stage begins, where the fish requires 90 to 120 days to reach 1 kg.

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