It has been observed that selling catfishes before due time always result in a loss — especially when the fishes sold are under three month old. Many fish farmers are the architect of their own failure. They plan to fail even at the onset of their business. Those essential aspects of their business that should be monitored are left at the mercy of chances. As far as I am concerned, planning is everything in catfish farming. You might need to plan the number of times to stock and harvest in a year, number of fishes to stock based on your financial capacity, type of feed to use and many more critical areas of fish farming. Here are seven major factors that can cause you to sell before an appointed time:
- Poor financial planning is the number one factor that can make you sell your fishes when you are not ready to sell. As you know, your fishes need to get to maturity before you can make good profit on them. Ensure you are 100 percent financially ready before you stock. If you are taking a loan, ensure your account is credited before you start up. Your plan should be prepared based on the number of fishes the available capital can feed. It is not how far but how well. There was a time I stocked 3,000 catfishes and made more profit than a friend that stocked above 12,000 pieces of juvenile.
- Some farmers will stock under poor pond condition with the hope of effecting necessary correction after a season. However, total collapse of the pond mid-season could make them sell before necessary. Once a repair is required on the pond, please do before you stock. Delay could be dangerous. A drainage that needs to be cleared must be cleared now. Strengthen all dikes that need repair. You never can predict nature unless you want to sell the remnant of your fishes after flood due to a powerful rainfall.
- Health related issues like cracked head, mortalities, etc, have made many catfish farmers to sell their stock untimely. To some extent, farmers can prevent catfish diseases. Pond preparation is a must. Also water and feed must be monitored adequately to avoid diseases that could force you to sell when you are not ready. Get prepared for unforeseen health challenges and apply the right control measure as I suggest in my article on cure for catfish mortality.
- There was a time catfish farmers encountered shortage and scarcity of feeds and feed ingredients. Many were forced to sell their stock due to this problem. Planning the feed of your stock will not be a bad idea. At present, scarcity of feeds of lower sizes in the market could cause hatchers to sell untimely.
- Failure to secure your pond from theft with appropriate security technique can cause you to sell before time. Ensure you plan how to secure your pond as you plan to stock. Do not wait till your fishes are stolen before you are forced to sell untimely.
- Many opt to sell their stock before due time based on market information. Some farmers rush to sell their fishes upon market information that price of table size will fall. Do not rush to sell because some market information could be far from the truth. You could lose more when you sell before your fishes get to maturity.
Other factors that could make you sell untimely include flood, expiration of rent, overstocking, etc.