Fishery Development for rural livelihood and conservation of fish species in Sarphu
Fishery Development for rural livelihood and conservation of fish species in Sarphu
Project Summary
The project will involve two communities, namely, Sarpchu and Yagang chiwog (Sub Block). These communities are located in the extreme-reaches of Wangchu (Raidak) basin. Sarphu is located 99 km south of Dzongkhag (District) headquarter while Yagang is located 70 km away from Dzongkhag headquarter towards same direction. The majority of the community members are farmers growing mainly cash crops – primarily acre nuts, ginger and cardamom.

These two communities have less income generating activities driven by human wildlife conflict and climate change and exacerbated locally by unsustainable agriculture farming practices. Rampant fishing and availability of about 29 species of fish including Golden Masher poses threat to the conservation of river bio-diversity. Limited source of animal protein in the diet and less women empowerment due to caste and youth unemployment are other issue that needs to be stressed through fish farming. As the communities lies close to international boarder and far from the major market hub has failed to sell their cash crops and other insignificant income source due to lock down imposed by the government and India on either side depriving of numerous household necessities during the Covid-19 pandemic situation. This would become a major concern for livelihood if not addressed through fish farming as an alternative major source of income for livelihood.

The project objective is to: (1) develop, promote and increase the capacity of the targeted farming communities on aquaculture for sustainable agriculture and fisheries and food security. (2) Provide awareness and gain support for biodiversity conservation for the purpose of Masher conservation and other fish species by the community themselves. The above stated objective will be achieved with the following approaches: (a) Implement fishery activities through group formation in collaboration with National Research and Development Center for Aquaculture (NR&DCA), Gelephu and Darla Geog Administration. (b) Promote conservation activities through fishery group in collaboration with National Research and Development Center for Riverine and Lake Fishery, Haa and Forest Division Gedu. (c) Make fishery a vibrant income generating activities through commercialization by linking the groups with others organization especially with Bhutan Livestock Development Corporation limited for marketing and value addition.

1.3.1. Rationale and objectives
The project will involve two communities, namely, Sarpchu and Yagang chiwog (Sub Block). These communities are located in the extreme-reaches of Wangchu (Raidak) basin. Sarphu is located 99 km south of Dzongkhag (District) headquarter while Yagang is located 70 km away from Dzongkhag headquarter towards same direction. The majority of the community members are farmers growing mainly cash crops – primarily acre nuts, ginger and cardamom.

These communities farm on steep slopes, often using unsustainable agricultural practices e.g. slash and burn. They are already at risk from soil degradation which is reducing the productivity of their farms. With climate change, there is likely to be an increase in soil erosion and landslides, as rainfall of high intensity falls during severe weather and after long periods of drought. Already, there are heavy rainfall and major landslides in these and neighboring communities, often blocking and breaking away roads, thus cutting of communities from services and facilities, as well as damaging crops. According to Amnesty International, climate change is and will continue to harm all of us unless governments take action. However, its effects are likely to be much more pronounced for certain groups – for example, those communities dependent on agricultural or coastal livelihoods as well as those who are generally already vulnerable, disadvantaged and subject to discrimination.

Less income generating activities driven by human wildlife conflict and climate change which is exacerbated by unsustainable agriculture farming practices are the issues in the communities. Beside, rampant fishing and availability of about 29 species of fish including Golden Masher poses threat to the conservation of river bio-diversity. Furthermore, unchecked fishing will have negative impact on the biological diversity and will reduce the resilience of the river eco-system. Also, limited source of animal protein in the diet and less women empowerment due to caste and youth unemployment are some of the issues. Apart from the above statements, lock down imposed by the government and India on either side has deprived the farmers of these communities from numerous household necessities during the Covid-19 pandemic situation which would be a major concern later if it’s not addressed. It is because the impact of COVID-19 crisis is prevalent across the country. At the same time even though the impact is severe, most of the people are trying to cope with whatever alternatives they have during the crisis. Thus, this project is proposed with the following primary objectives:

1. To develop, promote and increase the capacity of the targeted farming communities on aquaculture for sustainable agriculture and fisheries and food security.
2. Provide awareness and gain support for biodiversity conservation for the purpose of Masher conservation and other fish species by the community themselves.

The above stated objective will be achieved with the following approaches: (a) Implement fishery activities through group formation in collaboration with National Research and Development Center for Aquaculture (NR&DCA), Gelephu and Darla Geog Administration. (b) Promote conservation activities through fishery group in collaboration with National Research and Development Center for Riverine and Lake Fishery, Haa and Forest Division Gedu. (c) Make fishery a vibrant income generating activities through commercialization by linking the groups with others organization especially with Bhutan Livestock Development Corporation limited for marketing and value addition.
In addition to the above statements the self sufficiency rate of fish for Chhukha Dzongkhag is 6.2 % (101.3gm/person/day) as compared to the nation which is 270gm/person/day. It is much lower when compared to the developing countries (0.1% or 0.05gm/person/day for Chhukha whereas the developing countries have 51.51 gm/person/day). The self sufficiency rate of Darla geog where the two proposed communities has 14.3 % (0.10gm/person/day). It was able to produce about 4.9 tons of fish during 2019-2020 financial year. However, this production does not meet the requirement of the general population. There is a need to produce about 18.376 tons which is more than 55 % of the current production capacity of existing farms. Hence, the project could aid in meeting the self sufficiency of fish within the geog as well as for the Dzongkhag contributing to the nation goal of food self sufficiency. The project would also aid these communities to adapt to Covid-19 pandemic through diversification of their income source. Therefore the secondary objective of the project is to increase fish production through sustainable fish farming.
 
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Project Snapshot

Grantee:
Sarphu Fishery Farm
Country:
Bhutan
Area Of Work:
Biodiversity
CapDev
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 24,770.00
Co-Financing Cash:
US$ 13,611.10
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 3,305.60
Project Number:
BHU/SGP/OP7/Y1/CORE/BD/2021/07
Status:
Currently under execution

Grantee Contact

Mr. Kazi Man Rai
Phone: +975 17995579 / +975 17717135
 

Address

Sarphu village, Darla Gewog, Chukha District
NA , Chukha , 11001

SGP Country office contact

Mr. Tenzin Wangchuk
Phone:
009752322424
Email:
Mr. Tshering Phuntsho
Phone:
009752322424 (ext:330)
Email:

Address

UN House, Peling Lam (Street), Kawajangsa, Thimphu, P.O. Box No. 162
Thimphu, Bhutan, 11001