HYDERABAD: Staff from Telangana Health and Family Welfare department whose expertise lies in prevention, treatment of infections and diseases, have been trying their hand at rearing larvae eating Gambusia fish in ponds and reservoirs to control population of mosquitoes, although they face difficulty in transporting the fish.
Now, they are instructed to construct hatcheries and rear Gambusia fish at office premises.
A few officials who did not want to be named frowned and questioned why does staff in the health department have to put in efforts in rearing fish. They said that if the task is given to unemployed people, it will be a win-win situation.
However, officials in the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme said that it does not need expertise and rearing Gambusia fish takes as much it takes to take care of Gold Fish in aquariums. Although, the thought of constructing the hatcheries in premises of health department offices has crossed minds of officials, since most of the offices are in rented premises, they did not implement the idea yet.
The department’s staff said that they do not have required resources in safely transporting the fish. “On one occasion, when 10,000 Gambusia fish were being transported in one drum, all of them died as they consumed all the oxygen in the drum. When Fisheries department transport fish from one place to another, they do it by using one oxygen tank. If the department helps us, we will be able to execute our task in a better way,” said a staff personnel.
In May this year, additional director of the National Vector Borne Diseases Control Programme, Dr S Prabhavathi said that they will procure the fish from the Fisheries department. “I passed instructions to construct hatcheries and grow Gambusia fish. We have to think where they have to be constructed. Our people know how to rear the fish,” Dr Prabhavathi said.
She added that the fish will be released in ponds.