Home Fish Farming in India – A Full Guide

Introduction: Hello aqua farmers today we are back with a great information of home fish farming in India, indoor fish farming and small scale backyard fish farming in India. Fish is a healthy and nutritious protein, which is popular around the world. Fish is a nutritious protein source that is rich in nutrients like omega-3 Fatty acids that improve our heart health and lowers our blood cholesterol level. Farmed fish has been playing the main role in meeting global protein demands. Raising fish at home could open up several profitable opportunities today. Home raised fish could easily be sold for profit around the neighborhood or other restaurants.

A step by step guide to home fish farming in India

Fish farming is an old method of agriculture, which produces a steady source of protein. You can grow or nurture fish in a backyard pond or fish tanks. The common types of fish that can be easily raised for commercial or personal consumption are tilapia, carp, salmon, and catfish. Growing fish in backyard or fish tanks can be fun as well as rewarding. It could be a source of income for you if you wish to later sell your fish for profit.

Fish farming is a form of aquaculture and the act of fish farming is about raising fish commercially in tanks or enclosures for human consumption. There are different types of fish farms that utilize different aquiculture technique. Many varieties of fish, including tilapia and trout, can be raised at home backyard pond. If you live in an area far from the ocean or where there are few lakes and rivers with fish obtainable, you can start a fish farming business at home. To begin as a fish farmer you will want to learn the basics of the process.

A Guide to Start a Fish Farm at Home.
A Guide to Start a Fish Farm at Home.

Indoor fish farming

The indoor fish farming process is the alternative to cultivating fish outdoors in a cage system. With the emergence of technological advances, raising fish indoors is now possible using good control production methods. Indoor fish farming is often very sophisticated and in some instants allow for automatic collection and processing of fish wastes into crop fertilizers. There are several advantages to indoor fish farming:

The advantages to indoor fish farming can be given below;

  • Fish are protected from predators and climate changes.
  • Fish are often formed faster through temperature control, water quality and feeding practices.
  • Indoor fish farming is often considered more environmentally friendly since it requires less water and produces less waste.
  • Avoids the chance of fish escaping and getting loose with wild fish populations.
  • It allows higher stock densities and often saved farm labor costs.
  • It often allows greater flexibility for facility locations and which can save transportation costs if facilities are located near markets.

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Start a home-based fish farming business

Here we discuss how to start a home-based fish farming business;

  • The first thing you will want to start a home-based fish farming business then you know basic knowledge about raising fish.
  • You will need to learn about the business side of farming. To raise fish you will want some space in your backyard for digging a fish pond or space in the basement or anywhere else if you want to raise fish in containers.
  • Fish can be raised in any kind of fish tanks, containers, and also tubs. You could even fish raise in barrels.
  • Some basic knowledge about fish is needed and it is advisable to get as much knowledge as possible about fish farming.
  • The more fish farming knowledge brings about better chances to succeed in a home-based fish farming business, whether it is a backyard fish farm or indoor container-based aquaculture.

Space in your home for fish farming

When starting an indoor fish farm, you could use an indoor swimming pool or tub to obtain you started, if you have enough space for those. If you don’t, you can use plastic containers or fish tanks for that. The size of your container will depend on the size of the fish you want to raise and the number of the fish plan on raising and harvesting. The container size will have to be bigger if your fish produce large before harvest time. A variety of freshwater fish can be raised indoors easily. You should also have a means to control your light level and temperature of the water, so select a place where you have enough space, enough light and availability of heat during winter.

Equipment needed for home fish farming

To start a home-based fish farm, it is required to dig a fishpond or gather some fish tanks or containers for indoor fish farming. Water from a reliable source must be chosen; municipal supply water will be fine. Once you have got a pond or container setup, juvenile fish and some fish feed to start would be necessary.

For large scale pond based fish farms, additional equipment would be required, that is;

  • Aquarium or fish tank
  • Pumps
  • Aeration Devices
  • Net or Seine Reels
  • Handling and Grading Equipment
  • Water testing equipment

Various home based fish farming methods 

You can use any extra space and raise fish at home or around the house. When selecting a site and planning home based fish farm, select a spot that’s easily accessible. Also, consider the type of fish suitable for climate and space. Below are some of the places where fish can be raised.

Backyard ponds

If you have enough space in the backyard you can dig your own pond and raise a wide variety of fish for food. Make sure the backyard pond is ecologically balanced so that plants and fish can co-exist. Having a pond makes a backyard attractive to the natural species in your area.

Swimming pool

If you have an old swimming pool that you no longer use, you could turn it into an attractive fish pond. Your pool should be clean and oxygenated. And, include aquatic plants in your pool.

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Aquariums are useful for indoor fish farming. You can place them anywhere which means in the living room, basement, balcony, or anywhere you have some extra space.

Tubs and containers

A home-based fish farm doesn’t have to be big. Large tubs and containers are useful for indoor or outdoor fish farming around the house.


There are several methods to raise fish in an aquaponic system. An aquaponic system is the combination of aquaculture and hydroponics. It allows you to produce plants and raise fish at the same time. Aquaponic is one of the efficient polyculture farming methods where you are able to produce more crops in less time, using little resources and input. After your initial input, the system circulates nutrients and makes a balance between plants and fish.

Setting up an indoor fish farm

You can raise a variety of freshwater fish such as tilapia, koi, trout, catfish, and many other species, using simple aquaculture methods. Make sure when you choose and buy juvenile fish, choose a supplier who hatched, nurtured and raised them in a chemical-free natural environment. Once you have baby fish swimming in your fish tank or water containers, you have to make sure that they are growing well and so you need to control and monitor their growing and breeding conditions closely.

You will need a filtration system and a pump to circulate the water from your pump to plant trays. The waste from fish containers can be used as food for your plants and then put back into the fish tanks to minimize waste. It keeps your water free from toxic elements and aerates the fish water, which will help you keep the water quality in the fish containers. You will require some testing kits to test the water quality, such as the pH levels and the chemical balance of the water.

Having an indoor system reduces the possibility of being infected by diseases and it reduces the chances of pest or insect attacks. And there is no possibility of pollution from pesticide run-off and toxic chemicals contaminating water bodies.

Steps in creating a fish pond

The methods of fish farming are described step-by-step;

Select a location

To start a fish farm in a backyard, an appropriate spot for the pond must be selected. Your pond must be in a place that is naturally low in your backyard and it should be able to collect water naturally. Plan out the location with exact dimensions on a piece of paper. Doing so will help out the actual shape and size of the pond and how well it will fit into your backyard. Make sure to include plants in your farming plan. Your plan could include fountains or waterfalls to make your pond attractive.

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Plan for digging a pond

Once you have selected a spot, consider the tools you will want for digging. Before you start digging, mark the outline of the pond. You can use ropes, garden hoses, or extension cords to mark the area. You can adjust the shape and size of the pond until you are happy with the shape and size. Your final layout must include plenty of plants and surrounding areas around your pond. If you plan to dig a large pond, you could need to rent a bobcat. Contact local authorities first to make sure the area you permit such landscaping in your backyard. Also make sure that there are no utilities that are electric lines, gas pipes, and water or sewerage lines buried under the ground where you plan to dig.

Dig a pond

If you plan to dig a small pond you could use a shovel or rent a bobcat if you plan for a bigger pond. One good method for digging is to dig at 16-inch depths at a time and pile the dirt nearby at the back of the pond where you can place your waterfall. Dig deeper towards the center where you can place a pump for fountain. Dig in steps and plan for several plants to be placed on the steps at different levels of depth. 

Selecting the fish breed

After pond construction, the next step is to select the right type of fish breed for rearing. The first point is the type of fish to be reared- whether ornamental, freshwater or brackish water fish. Choosing the right variety and breed depends on the type of water in the pond, resource availability, climate conditions, and market demand. For example, carp varieties of fish such as rohu, catfish, catla, grass carp, etc. are meant for the Indian ponds. Some farmers raise two or more different breeds of fish in the same pond as this ensures better utilization of resources. In the case of ornamental fish, some of the commercially important species that are loaches, barbs, freshwater sharks, danio, and goldfish, etc.

Add fish to the pond

Make sure you choose the right species of fish for your pond. Fish like trout require highly oxygenated water and need the water to remain cool throughout the year. Pumpkinseed or Bluegills are more flexible because they grow fast and do well in almost all types of ponds. Large predatory fish such as perch or bass need more space and food. When you order fish, then they will appear in a small plastic bag. Make sure to add the water that they came into the pond so they adjust easily with the surrounding.

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Backyard fish farming could be highly beneficial. The system of aquaculture and polyculture where several species of fish are grown together for many years. Your fish will require a regular supply of food to grow faster. Never overfeed your fish because it will give rise to more problems for example bacteria, fungus, or predators. It is important that you maintain an ecological balance and do not produce pollution or excessive nitrogen through your pond.

How to identify fish diseases in home fish farming

Identification of disease may require laboratory examination by a specialist, but sick fish can easily be recognized by an observant fish farmer.

Signs of fish disease contain abnormalities and symptoms such as a fish not feeding, ulcers on the body, or cloudy eyes. The common indicators of fish disease are fish coming to the surface and gasping for oxygen, higher than common levels of sickness or death in an aquaculture system.

Healthy water generally means healthy fish, so paying close attention to the condition of your tank is vital.

Ammonia poisoning – Though not a disease, ammonia poisoning is a general problem in fish tanks especially new ones. It can cause high levels of stress in fish and lead to other health issues including bacterial disorders.

Cottonmouth – This bacterial infection can mainly affect cold-water and tropical fish. It’s sometimes confused with a fungal infection because of the appearance of white or greyish-white spots on the fish’s head, though generally, this infection starts as a pale area around the head and mouth. This may turn yellow or brownish in color with red-tinged edges.

Fungal infections – Fungal infections are one of the common disorders for fish. Fungal spores naturally in fish tanks, but sick, stressed or injured fish can cause a dangerous increase. These fungal infections manifest as a white cotton-wool-like growth on the skin, mouth, fins or gills. This condition is generally a secondary problem, so it will need a two-part treatment.

Signs of reduced vitality – Healthy fish swims quickly away from the disturbances along with the tank. If fish do not rush away when the fish farmer approaches, some type of disorder must be suspected. Other symptoms contain dropping fins, loss of balance or general sluggishness.

Failure to feed – Under good water conditions, healthy fish feed vigorously and often taking food immediately after it is provided. Low oxygen concentrations or high water temperatures, as well as diseases, could cause fish to stop feeding, but the failure of the fish to accept feed is a positive sign that pond conditions are not good. The farmer must take immediate steps to find out why his fish is not feeding.

Care and management of home fish farming

Along with a good pond environment and high-quality feeding, you have to take good care of your fish. Particularly the growing fish need more care and management. Always test the pH of water. Pond water with pH level 7 to 8 is best for appropriate fish farming. Prevent the entrance of different types of predators. Always take necessary steps against different types of fish diseases. It is said that preventing diseases is improved than curing it. So always try to take good care of fish and pond. The first precaution in fish farm maintenance is to maintain the water pH level. The pH level must be maintained at neutral for optimal growth of the fish. In addition, it should be treated with salt, potassium permanganate, etc to prevent the growth of pathogens. Occasional water treatment ensures the prevention of viral attacks.

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  1. I have a pond of 22 ft /13 ft. In it I am farming tropical Koi fish. Started farming with only 11, for last 3 months. They breed well 2 times and now they are about 60 in number. Earlier they took their food well, but now they are not feeding. I have also prepared for a waterfall
    for origination. Please advise me how to keep clean my pond? It becomes cloudy very fast. Thank you.


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