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Breeding bony tongue in Liberia


November 29, 2013
By Quentin Dodd
A grant from FAO to the Liberian Bureau of National Fisheries will allow the creation of a new National Aquaculture Strategy and Development Plan (NAS). Bony tongue is on the menu.

Aquaculture in Liberia may be about to change – big-time. An extensive aquaculture training program is being introduced by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

 A grant from FAO to the Liberian Bureau of National Fisheries will allow the creation of a new National Aquaculture Strategy and Development Plan (NAS). The approximate 2,500 people in aquaculture – of whom about 1,050 are part-time, subsistence fish farmers – will receive some training in bony tongue, a general term that’s applied to any of several heavy-bodied tropical river fishes in the family Osteoglossidae.

 The largest member of the Osteoglossidae family, the arapaima, paiche or pirarucu (Arapaima gigas) of South America, can reach lengths of 2m and weigh up to 100 kg. Its scales have a highly mineralised hard outer layer making it a strong, resilient fish. Its boneless steaks are considered a delicacy.

– Quentin Dodd


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