Among the freshwater catfishes, magur (Clarias batrachus) is in great demand in eastern and north-eastern India; it is revered as highly nutritious and therapeutic in nature. It contains higher percentage of protein and iron compared to most other edible freshwater fishes. Stinging catfish Heteropneustes fossilis or ‘singhi’ is also commercially significant, known for its invigorating quality that includes taste and nutritional values. Its muscle contains high amounts of protein and iron (226 mg/100 g). These two fishes are very useful for people during recovery from an illness or medical treatment. Both have relatively high haemoglobin content (11.58%), better palatability, medicinal values and live out of water for several hours if their skin is kept moist.

During May-June 2016, Sri Sayer Mohammad Sarkar, an experienced magur breeder and seed producer, has achieved success in producing induced-bred hybrid seed of H. fossilis and C. batrachus. His breeding protocol and experiences in nursery and growout of hybrid catfish are shared in this article.

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Aquaculture Asia Magazine, July-September 2017

In this issue:

Regional network on culture-based fisheries and stock enhancement; trout fisheries in the uplands of Arunachal Pradesh - resources and opportunities; empowering young Indian women through entrepreneurship development - opportunities and constraints; a view on murrel (snakehead) fisheries in India; hybrid catfish Clarias batrachus x Heteropneustes fossilis produced by farmers in West Bengal, India; Backyard fish based pig farming using low-cost feed in Arunachal Pradesh - a success story; NACA Newsletter.