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JamesMusslewhite

Building a Small Lobster Hatchery here in the Philippines

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Kahuna

Theoretically you could...

 

 

if you were a lobster.

:rofl:  :rofl:  :rofl:

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JamesMusslewhite

The second Lobster hut was built less than 20 minutes by boat from our farm. Cost (including net) was less than $350

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The area maintains a heaver water flow and does not experience the brackish condition during heavy rains nor does the water get murky and muddy. We only have 26 out of the original 50 lobsters and they are very close to market size. This was the cheapest to build as it merely has a small hut. The hut is built next to the huts of an uncle of my wife and his sons so there was no need for anything larger. We only periodically visit the hut to check on the stock but we never sleepover at this hut. The hut serves more as for storage than anything else. This one is a very basic (K.I.S.S.) setup with no bells or whistles. 

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JamesMusslewhite

This lobster hut is the third one we built and is still a work in progress. We have a net in the water but have no stock presently in the net. We built a smaller hutch now out in front of this one to use for storage This lobster hut we built so we can use it as a getaway as I love staying out over the water, but once I asked to be a partner and build this lobster hatchery we have decided to wait putting any stock in the net. My wife and I decided to keep upgrading the hut and increase the size of the decking. Then once I start producing fingerlings in the hatchery then I will add additional floating nets and stock them. Besides we can only do so much. Between our farm, building this facility and a few agrarian projects at our business partner's farm we already have a lot of irons in the fire right now already. 

 

This hut is constructed primarily out of ironwood and hardwood which will insure many years of operation. We had been collecting the materials (a little here and a little there) for almost two years. We then built our boat (thread on that project is in the boat forum) so it would be finished last November as the tidal forces really pull out the water and would make it very easy to properly dig the holes and set the ironwood poles. We only had about a three week window of opportunity before the waters would cease this yearly phenomenon and we would have had to wait another whole year. Thankfully we finished the boat on time and we were able to start on the project. For about three weeks every morning for a period of about 6 hours a day the tide pulls out unusually far, so the area which normally has a normal low tide water depth of about 4 feet is then only a depth of just a few inches. Perfect to get the poles properly set into place and to be able to comfortably work under the decking areas to easily place and nail the supports and beams.

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Some may say that nobody seems to be actually doing any work in these photos. This is because I would take the photos during a mid-day work break. The work pace was fast and furious and the work days were long. The boats needed to loaded and launched around 3am so they could reach the work site before the tide water pulled out and the work did not stop until almost dark when the rising tide allowed us to navigate back up the river inlet where we kept the boat.

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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JamesMusslewhite

The waters were beginning to return back to their normal low tide water levels after only a couple of weeks, but by then all the poles and underside work have already been completed, as I had already said that there was a very small window of opportunity which only happens once a year. Our timing had been perfect and now we started on the upper work.

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And as my wife's sister shows, it is such a rough life out on a lobster hut.

 

Now this hut is about half the size of our first but it was much lighter construction and lots and lots of bamboo. When you weigh 220 lbs bamboo flooring is always a concern. This hut is ironwood and hardwood and can easily last a decade or more. I will eventually replace all the nepa with marine plywood. Cost so far has been around $1,200 for what you see here. But there is another small hut now out in front of this one which is not pictured. I will also be extending the working deck areas and adding floating nets so that cost can quickly more than double or triple the total cost once done. But it's built to last and able to house several hundreds of lobsters in different stages of growth. Expensive as that may seem to some, the profits off one 10 month crop would easily recover all construction costs plus the funds to restock the nets. The facility can also last 10-20 years with little structural maintenance.

 

Quick figure (conservative)

Stock cost: 300 lobsters fingerlings @ 350php each = 105,000php 

Sell price: 300 (.5 kilo weight) @ 1,200php =360,000

of course minus cost of rice and labor for attendant and any feed expenses.

 

This hut setup when completely finished can house 1,500-4,000 fingerling

stock cost: 1,500 lobster fingerlings @ 350php each = 525,000php

Sell price: 1,500 (.5 kilo weight) @ 1,200php = 1.800,000php

of course minus cost of rice and labor for attendant and any feed expenses.

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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JamesMusslewhite

Now floating net platforms are another way to go. This will be done here at this facility along with floating cages as they allow the most nets in the water for the least construction cost while allowing a stable working platform and housing attendants and supplies. These videos I took in Davao a few years back before I traveled to Maldives to design a Lobster/grouper floating platform there. I went with the Speaker of the Maldives Parliament and his associate there to look at some working mariculture platforms before traveling further down the coast to tour a small shrimp hatchery.

 

floating platforms

 

 

Shrimp hatchery note: this small shrimp was producing 3.5 million units (individual shrimp) per crop

 

 

 

A few years back I had visited a local lobster buyer's place here in Surigao City. When there I saw a couple of simple water tank setups that was used to house lobsters. The tanks were simply made out of marine plywood and were tiered so that a single small sump pump could distribute recirculated water to each tank and allow the overflow and gravity to help aerate the system. This could easily be adapted for use in a freshwater aquaponic system as well. I decided to add it to the thread because a really good and inexpensive alternative idea should be shared.

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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thebob

Can't you move the videos to Youtube so they can be watched by those who don't do BookFace?

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JamesMusslewhite

Can't you move the videos to Youtube so they can be watched by those who don't do BookFace?

Thank you for the suggestion. Yes I will try to upload the videos to Youtube when I have time and re-post them to this thread.

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softail

Nice to see someone living out their dream

Edited by softail
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M.C.A.

James the lobster looks delicious, thanks for sharing the photos and information you are blessed.

Edited by M.C.A.
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AussieLex

Very interesting thread as was your boat building one ... I buy smallish lobsters at Pasil Fish Markets in Cebu when they are available ... usually costs me 700 to 800 pesos a kilo ... 3 lobsters are generally around 1.2 kilos ... 

 

In a past life, in the early 90's, I spent a couple of seasons in the Torres Straights between Aussie and New Guinea mainly on Warrior reef catching painted crays ... they seemed to be much larger and we sold them to the wholesaler for $35 AU a kilo ... but that was just cray tails snap frozen in 10kg boxes ...

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JamesMusslewhite

Very interesting thread as was your boat building one ... I buy smallish lobsters at Pasil Fish Markets in Cebu when they are available ... usually costs me 700 to 800 pesos a kilo ... 3 lobsters are generally around 1.2 kilos ... 

 

In a past life, in the early 90's, I spent a couple of seasons in the Torres Straights between Aussie and New Guinea mainly on Warrior reef catching painted crays ... they seemed to be much larger and we sold them to the wholesaler for $35 AU a kilo ... but that was just cray tails snap frozen in 10kg boxes ...

I am curious as we have a freshwater bug we call a painted devil crayfish species (Cambarus ludovicianus) which are in the rivers, ponds and lakes from mid Texas to the Mississippi delta. Does yours look like this one we have?

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I know you boys from down under have the crayfish commonly known as 'red lobsters'.

Bisnis+Lobster+Ku+-+Procambarus+Clarkii+

 

Now what a lot of folks who think they are real aficionados on eating crayfish, what we Southern boys call crawdads, but never see just how big these tasty 'mud bugs' can get. When I was a lad we would traverse into the swamps and marshes below the Golden Triangle and hunt 'mud bug' frogs and noodling catfish. We would split up in groups of three. One noodled, one held the 30-30 at the ready while the other kept a close watch for gators. This was because gators see dumbass rednecks standing in shoulder-high brackish water as food. As I tend to be of the sort to volunteer as the noodler you are a bit particular as to your other two partners. The good eats were plentiful but sometimes the same could be said for the gators. A couple of 25-45 lb catfish, 20-50 1-3 lb frogs and a rice sack of crawdads (mud bugs), and a possible couple of fat gator tails a cooking with two beer kegs on ice and you talking a proper 48-hour long Cajun style family feast. Man I miss those days of my miss-spent youth. Sorry I got caught up in the reminiscing and almost forgot to show you guys a larger crawdad.

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Now I have caught more than just a few in this size range out of the Texas waters...

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But damn son, you Aussies grow them big in Lower Eyre Peninsula... I have to respectfully tip my hat.

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I know this will draw gears from some of our more homophobia leaning folks on the forum because it just don't sound right when saying it, but the truth needs to be told. When eating boiled mud bugs, 'real men suck heads'.  :biggrin_01:

Edited by JamesMusslewhite
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AussieLex
Does yours look like this one we have?

 

 

James in northern Australia they call lobster crayfish ... same as the ones you pictured initially ... but everyone called them painted cray ...or just cray ...  we would just harvest the tails for export ....  the size limit a minimum tail size of 115 mm or minimum carapace length of 90 mm for all commercially caught lobsters;

 ... 

 

Same as the one below that you posted ... 

 

Here is a pic ...

 

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post-16302-0-22162400-1467633481.jpg

Edited by AussieLex
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AussieLex

I can see a bit of a difference and just did a search and its also know as a Tropical Rock Lobster if that helps...looks a little different to the one you pictured ... but just as tasty ...

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AussieLex

These are really popular in aussie as well...called a Morton Bay Bug or Balmain Bug depending on the area you are in .... similar in taste and texture to lobster ...

 

post-16302-0-32708000-1467634547.jpg

Edited by AussieLex
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JamesMusslewhite

James in northern Australia they call lobster crayfish ... same as the ones you pictured initially ... but everyone called them painted cray ...or just cray ...  we would just harvest the tails for export ....  the size limit a minimum tail size of 115 mm or minimum carapace length of 90 mm for all commercially caught lobsters;

 ... 

 

Same as the one below that you posted ... 

 

Here is a pic ...

 

attachicon.giffbsdfgas.jpg

 

attachicon.gifaaswas.jpg

That is the same species I am raising here. It is the Panulirus Ornatus aka (Fancy Spiny or Rock Lobster). These are the variety I will be breeding in the hatchery.

 

These are really popular in aussie as well...called a Morton Bay Bug or Balmain Bug depending on the area you are in .... similar in taste and texture to lobster ...

 

attachicon.gifwdqa.jpg

That is another variety found in the waters around Surigao and Dinagat Island commonly known as a 'Slipper Lobster' which I hope to later start breeding to hatch larvae from eggs. I am also interested in the mantis Shrimp as they can be found around Dinagat Island.

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