INTRODUCTION

Aquaculture in Bhutan formally began in 1984 with the establishment of a cultivable carp hatchery in Gelephu under Sarpang dzongkhag. Then named as National Warm Water Fish Culture Centre (NWWFCC), the hatchery has since its establishment been promoting and supporting the development of carp farming in the country. After an initial boom, carp production activities more or less stalled in the late 80s and remained dormant till the early 2000s. At the turn of the century, in the early 2000s, carp farming resumed and has since then been gaining momentum steadily. The erstwhile NWWFCC has over the years evolved into what is today called National Research and Development Centre for Aquaculture (NRDCA). Owned and supervised by the Department of Livestock (DoL) of Ministry of Agriculture and Forests (MoAF), the NRDA is the apical organization responsible for developing aquaculture in the country. Today over 500 farming households in the country are actively engaged in carp production (year 2016 data compiled by NRDCA). The species cultured are Grass carp, Silver carp, Common carp, Rohu, Mrigal and Catla. These producers acquire carp seed and other important technical support from the NRDCA.

Presently, Bhutan produces around 187.631 MT of fish per year (year 2016 data published by DoL). Because the national production is meager, the country imports in excess of thousands of MT of fish every year to meet its demand.