JamesMusslewhite

Building a Small Lobster Hatchery here in the Philippines

253 posts in this topic


This is the species known as 'Panulirus ornatus' aka (Fancy Spiny or Rock Lobster) and this will be the species I will primarily specializing in producing this facility for the markets. There is also a local variety of lobster found in the waters here I also intend on trying to raise but though the local species actually brings a higher price from buyers I intend to primarily raise them to be free-released back into the local waters to help insure their population remains vibrant and healthy  The 'P. ornatus' is species most raised to be sold to buyers and currently the price offered by buyers for this species is 2,200php per kilo. The average market size of an individual 'P. ornatus' lobster is 1/2 kilo and above. A lobster to reach market size from a fingerling (AAA battery size) is usually 10-14 months, and from a fingerling (AA battery size) approximately 8-10 months depending on their care and feeding..

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The real problem with the industry is the strain on the natural supply of lobster fingerlings. The industry will eventually totally outstrip the supply. Factors like pollution, Red Tides, dynamite fishing and destruction of ocean mariculture will simply not allow the present strain on their natural population. Yet there are more growers entering the industry daily. Hatcheries are the only solution for the sustainability and growth of this industry.

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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This overview is of the location where the hatchery is presently being built. The real jewel of this location is the small saltwater pond and the waters here around Surigao City, Dinaget Island and Siargao island is they are well upstream from any large urban area  with water currents coming directly off the Philippine Seas and Pacific which flows inward and through the Surigao Straights. This means that the water is clean and free of the pollutants found in so many other locations around these islands.. This area is also free of the Red Tide events which decimates other areas. These waters still have a vibrant diverse natural fish populations and this area works diligently to protect and preserve the existing mangroves as well as vigorous mangrove replanting practices being conducted in this region. This makes it a natural mariculture fish nursery for a diverse array of mariculture and aquagic species. There has been a problem with dynamite damage in the past but they are trying to crackdown and prosecute them. I hope to use parts of the small island as a natural marine preservation sanctuary working with the regional authorities to relocate endangered species of corals so they can be protected and flourish so they can proliferate and help reseeding these waters so the corals can eventually try to recover. The clean steady currents can naturally redistribute spores and larvae around the islands in this region. It may only be a small drop in a huge bucket but at least it will be a drop.  

 

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This is a picture of the small saltwater pond next to the house we are living in next to the old concrete structure that will be used to house the hatchery.

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Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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These two videos were taken almost one month ago while we visited the island to check on the progress of the little house to see if it was ready for us to make the move over from the farm on Dinagat Island. These first two videos shows the island and the structures Sorry for the quality of the videos as they were taken with a cell phone.

 

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And this video taken about a week ago shows the progress made over the last 3-1/2 weeks.

 

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( these Facebook videos have had their security settings set to 'Private' and can no longer be viewed )

 

The same videos have been uploaded into my Youtube Channel and these three videos are linked later on this thread. Youtube has editing features not available on facebook which allows video quality enhancement and image stability to these videos allowing for a better viewing quality. Many people are unable to view Facebook videos as restricts viewing access to only those with Facebook accounts. Youtube allows free access viewing to anyone who visits my channel on their site. Please feel free to visit and view my videos and if you wish 'subscribe' and or 'like' my Youtube channel.   

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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I already like this thread...very interesting and tastfully presented! Speaking of which, I would love to offer my services as a lobster taster if you have the need. I will selflessly throw myself under the cholesterol bus to provide acurate palate data.

 

Seriously...good luck with this venture and I look forward to reading more.

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The old concrete story has a rather strange story behind it. Seems that years ago it was part of a previous mariculture project ran by a Taiwan national. At the time there were large fish cages which was heavily guarded with armed guards who would deny access to any and all locals. The owner of the facility kept a small seagoing ship anchored off the island. Then it was discovered that the whole facility was just a front for a rather large shabo operation. When the PNP readied a raid to be done here it is believed the operators were tipped off allowing everyone time to jump on the little ship and steamed away full speed to parts unknown.

 

My business partner eventually purchased all three titled tracts of the little island about a decade ago. He told me that the locals had stripped the structure down to the bare bones and then chewed on the bone. The old two story concrete structure will still serve it's purpose and will house all the saltwater tanks and equipment and serve as the heart of the hatchery. I will build a nepa roof between the first and second floor of the structure for now., and later I will add a second floor and the permanent metal roof placed on top of the 2-story structure. There is no reason to spend the money now on an expensive roof when it is really not needed, and once in production the profits generated will pay for the renovation. 

 

This how the inside looked when we first arrived as it was heavily overgrown.

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We started clearing the overgrowth late last week.

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and yesterday we started on the roof construction.And finally after years of preparation I can try to make this concept a reality. The game is afoot.

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Good luck and that building is still in great shape the expensive part of it the supporting structure is still there.  

 

I thought about doing something similar but with fresh water crabs, they raise them in our area and we are located next to the lake and have a low lying area where I could attempt to create a huge pit but I need to research this myself and find out how to build a crab pond.

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Now at the same time we are building the hatchery I also have to design gardens into a landscape, build some small chicken coops and rabbit hutches over the following weeks. Over the last few weeks we had deliveries of building materials, landscape plants and this morning we had a delivery of vegetables.

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The landscape design will primarily be vegetable and herb gardens with trellises along the fence line for climbing vegetables which will make for an attractive privacy screen while allowing substance for the table. We should start receiving deliveries of soils for the garden as well as bagging some quality soils from our own farm and transport them here in our boat. My business partner also loves orchids as much as I do so he has been delivering them here so I can use them in the landscape as well.

 

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Orchids are a subject I will be covering later as to their care, propagation and proper mounting. You can never have too many different species in your gardens.

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The more that is delivered means the more projects need to be started.

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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Good luck and that building is still in great shape the expensive part of it the supporting structure is still there.  

 

I thought about doing something similar but with fresh water crabs, they raise them in our area and we are located next to the lake and have a low lying area where I could attempt to create a huge pit but I need to research this myself and find out how to build a crab pond.

 

you could also raise prawns or fish together in crab ponds. It never hurts trying to multi-crop species whenever possible as to do so can allow you additional revenue streams from the same space.

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you could also raise prawns or fish together in crab ponds. It never hurts trying to multi-crop species whenever possible as to do so can allow you additional revenue streams from the same space.

Great idea, the lake has prawns or small shrimp in it, late at night the fishermen use bright lights and nets to haul them in right off the shore area's, but maybe I could find a much larger prawn that would work, it's fresh water though, Laguna de Bay.

Edited by M.C.A.

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