A FEASIBILITY STUDY OF RICE-FISH FARMING IN WESTERN AFRICA HOT
The paper presents the executive summary of results of a mission to Mali, Senegal, Ivory Coast and Ghana to evaluate past experience and current activities in rice-fish farming and assess the potential for further development. The main finding of the mission was that rice-fish culture is feasible in the West African subregion. The extensive form of rice-fish farming which is already practiced is worth improving to obtain higher fish yields. Intensive rice-fish culture should be introduced to rice farming in West Africa because it can provide additional income to rice farmers. The main immediate constraint is the need for technology training at local level. Recommendations include introduction of intensive rice-fish farming in rice plots with totally controlled irrigation; improved water management in low lying areas, especially for flood control; assessment of the feasibility of extensive rice-fish farming in ponds along rivers; assessment of the feasibility of extensive rice-fish culture in mangrove areas, with due recognition of environmental considerations; and integrated pest management for rice-fish farming.