Field Document 2
September 1983


A report prepared for the
Establishment of Fish Seed Production
Centre Project


I. Csávás
Aquaculture Engineer

This is one of a series of reports prepared during the course of the project identified on the title page. The conclusions and recommendations given in the report are those considered appropriate at the time of its preparation. They may be modified in the light of further knowledge gained at subsequent stages of the project.

The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this document do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the United Nations or the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations concerning the legal or constitutional status of any country, territory or sea area, or concerning the delimitation of frontiers.


The Food and Agriculture Organization is greatly indebted to the following persons who assisted the consultant in the implementation of the project:

Rome, 1983

Hyperlinks to non-FAO Internet sites do not imply any official endorsement of or responsibility for the opinions, ideas, data or products presented at these locations, or guarantee the validity of the information provided. The sole purpose of links to non-FAO sites is to indicate further information available on related topics.

This electronic document has been scanned using optical character recognition (OCR) software. FAO declines all responsibility for any discrepancies that may exist between the present document and its original printed version.





3.1 Recruitment of Staff

3.2 Training of Personnel

3.3 Construction of Physical Facilities

3.4 Purchasing

3.5 Reporting








The Government of the Kingdom of Bhutan, assisted by the United Nations Development Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, are engaged in the Establishment of Fish Seed Production Centre Project (BHU/80/007), the main purpose of which is to establish a fish seed production/demonstration centre, develop fisheries extension services, train local fish-farmers, integrate fish culture with animal husbandry, provide in-service training on the operating of demonstration units, and strengthen existing fish culture demonstration units.

Based on the findings and recommendations of a project formulating mission fielded in 1981 (see FI:DP/BHU/80/007), Field Document 11a proposal was elaborated and accepted in order to set up a National Warmwater Fish Seed Production Centre at Gaylegphug, Bhutan. The project document, duly signed by all parties by the end of March 1982, envisaged the services of an aquaculture engineer consultant in order to initiate construction of various facilities and purchase of equipment for the Centre.

1 FAO, 1982 Aquaculture development in Bhutan (5 April to 29 May 1981). A report prepared for the Establishment of Fish Seed Production Centre project by K.G. Rajbanshi and I. Csávás. Rome, FAO, FI:DP/BHU/80/007/1

FAO recruited for this post Mr I. Csávás who as a member of the 1981 mission participated in the site selection and elaborated the engineering designs of the Centre. His terms of reference were as follows:

In close collaboration with the national counterpart engineer as well as with the officials of Animal Husbandry Department, to assist in and be responsible for:

The consultant assumed duties by 25 October 1982 and arrived at the construction site on 7 November 1982. In the meantime, the Animal Husbandry Department of the Ministry of Development of the Royal Government of Bhutan purchased and fenced the entire 7.63 ha area selected by the previous mission, nominated a National Project Director and transferred one Fishery Inspector and 3 Fishery Assistants to the project.


The development objective of the project is to increase the pure fish seed production of various cultivable fish species for the promotion of warmwater fish culture in the country by distributing improved fish seed to the farmers in the private sector. In order to achieve this objective it is planned to construct a national fish seed production and demonstration centre at Gaylegphug, in the south of Bhutan, to respond, in the long term, to national warmwater fish fry requirements. At the end of the first phase of construction, however, was envisaged only the construction of a small multi-species hatchery, an office-cum-field-laboratory, a garage and residences, and 4 broodstock ponds (with a total area of 1 ha) and 5 nursery ponds (with a total area of 1.5 ha net water surface). The facility was planned to produce only 56 500 fingerlings for distribution to the interested farmers by the end of the project period. The construction of 7 additional fingerling ponds with a net water surface of 2.5 ha was planned for implementation only as a follow-up activity.

Simultaneously with construction, the work-plan of the project envisaged recruitment and training of local personnel. It was planned to recruit 1 officer-in-charge, 1 engineer, 2 fishery inspectors and 4 fishery assistants together with administrative staff (4) and grade-20 personnel (8). The officer-in-charge was to be trained in integrated warmwater fishculture through a 19-month fellowship (preferably in Hungary) and the medium level technicians were to receive practice-oriented in-service training in the techniques of induced breeding, hatching, larval rearing, nursery and fingerling production of warmwater fish species (preferably in Nepal).

Procurement of the equipment for the Centre was also planned for the initial period of the project; a total of US$ 36 000 was allocated for the purchase of 7 species of broodfish, hatchery equipment, field laboratory and office equipment and supplies, as well as basic books and journals on fish propagation and culture.

The second part of the project was planned to be extension-oriented. Even before completion of the construction and starting production of fry and fingerlings, project staff were expected to strengthen local training and extension activities in the private sector by organizing demonstrations at the Centre and at selected suitable private ponds in the neighbouring rural areas, and also by organizing grass-root level training courses for interested fish-farmers, and planning study-tours.

It was further envisaged that the project would indirectly promote technical cooperation among developing countries by procuring broodfish and/or breeder candidates from Nepal and India and by utilizing the accumulated experiences of these countries in freshwater fish culture in the training of project personnel.



Government personnel was recruited almost on schedule. A national project manager, Dr M.K. Rai, was officially nominated by the Animal Husbandry Department in July 1982; an assistant fishery development officer joined the project in November 1982 after completing his 6-month fellowship training in Hungary; one junior section officer of the Public Works Department with an engineering background joined the project in November 1982. During the preparatory phase of the project and the first 3 months of the construction period a total of 1 fishery inspector and 5 fishery assistants were appointed or transferred to the project.

Thus, except for 1 fishery inspector, who will not be needed until extension activities begin on a wider scale, key personnel were recruited as planned.

Administrative and accountancy duties of the project were being performed by the Regional Animal Husbandry Officer (Sarbhang), who is the national project manager. Independent administrative personnel for the project will be recruited only after completion of the office-cum-laboratory building at the project site. Grade-20 type jobs are performed by the three “chowkidars” (watchmen) hired or transferred to the project, and there is no need to increase their number until more facilities are put into operation.

The present project personnel is only slightly less than scheduled and the planned recruitment can easily be attained by the end of 1983. During the first months of the construction period, however, difficulties were caused by the inadequate training and experience of junior staff hired or transferred to the project (including that of the Public Works Department section officer). This was overcome by their in-service training at the site by the consultant, and present personnel is expected to continue and complete construction without major problems.


The project document envisaged a 9-month fellowship training of a university graduate on integrated warmwater fish culture in general and in hatchery management in particular. Thanks to joint efforts of the Royal Government and UNDP this training was started in May 1982 using the funds of the RAS/79/123 regional project. The trainee was a B.Sc. graduate (Mr Tenzing Dendup), who is expected to be promoted later to the managership of the Fish Seed Production Centre. He received 6 months of production-oriented training in all aspects of warmwater fish culture practices at the national Fish Culture Research Institute of Hungary (Szarvas), with emphasis on the techniques of induced breeding, hatching larval rearing, nursery and fingerling production.

The trainee returned to Bhutan with the consultant, joined the project and participated in construction activities. He was expected to continue his training until March 1983 with a further 6-month fellowship at the Luzon State University (Philippines).

Both senior and junior fishery inspectors and assistants of the project require practice-oriented basic training in warmwater aquaculture techniques. The project document provides for 4-months in-service training for 3 medium level fishery technicians only, which is well below actual requirements. It is planned to carry out the training in Nepal, because of the similarities in language, cultural background, topography, climate and the fish species to be propagated. Based on the personal communication of the consultant with the appropriate Nepalese authorities, the Royal Government of Nepal is willing to accept an increased number of Bhutanese fellows to be trained in the major propagation centres of Nepal (Tarahara, Janakpur, Hetauda, etc.) at a considerably reduced cost, which would allow in-service training of 6 medium-level technicians, instead of the scheduled 3, with only a minor additional UNDP contribution.

The candidates for the above in-service training were selected by the authorities of the Royal Government of Bhutan in agreement with the consultant, and the nomination forms of the first 3 trainees were completed, duly signed and forwarded to FAO by February 1983. Nomination forms of 3 additional candidates (Messrs Laxmi Prasad Sharma, Norbu Wangdi and Phuntso Dorji) will be completed and forwarded to FAO in due course in order to secure their training in Nepal between March and June 1984 by which time the necessary reallocation of UNDP funds could also be made. It is emphasized that the additional 3 candidates enlisted above are key personnel for the practical work to be carried out at the Centre and changes in nominees are to be avoided.

The project document provided for grassroot-level local training courses for some 20 interested private farmers and a studytour of 10 selected farmers to Nepal and/or India. As the prerequisites of these courses are the completion of the office-cum-laboratory building (where adequate facilities are planned for these), the broodstock ponds, nursery ponds and the hatchery (where demonstrations and practical training are to be organized), no. action was taken in this respect during the reporting period.


The workplan of the project envisaged the purchase of the land and fencing of the area of the 4 broodstock ponds and 5 nursery ponds in the preparatory phase. The Animal Husbandry Department, however, decided to acquire the total area, e.g., also the site of the 7 fingerling ponds.

A total of 7.63 ha of land in the best rice-growing area of Gaylegphug was purchased in December 1981 as recommended by the project formulating mission. It is noted that the price of the land (Nu 16 000/acre1) was considerably higher than the price forecasted in the report of the mission (NU 10 000/acre).

1 Exchange: US$ 1.00 = Ngultrum 9.53 (November 1982)

Fencing of the total area started in August 1982 and was completed in October 1982. The fence constructed was of a better quality than proposed by the mission (instead of wooden posts steel ones were used) which resulted in higher investment costs, but it offers considerably better protection and longer life. Construction of the approach road started in October 1982 and was completed in November 1982. The 4 m wide road was built of stone and gravel; blacktopping was not planned and is not required within the present project period.

A topographic survey was carried out and the pond system was designed in detail by the consultant during the project formulating mission (see FI:DP/BHU/80/007, Field Document 1). Field work, however, had to be started with a repeated survey, which took place between 8 and 17 November 1982. Construction of the water supply system and the dikes started on 20 November 1982 and it continued uninterruptedly even after the departure of the consultant. The construction was based almost entirely on manual labour. Some 150–300 unskilled labourers of both sexes (80–90 percent Assamese from neighbouring India) were employed to construct the dikes and 12–24 masons (mainly Bhutanese) to construct the structures (monks, culverts, etc.), the feeder canals and the hatchery facilities. For a week in November 1982 and for 3 weeks in January 1983 a bulldozer was made available to the project by the kind assistance of the Dzongda of Gaylegphug in the first period and by the kind cooperation of the UNDP sponsored project BHU/80/020 in the second. While the progress with manual labour only was unexpectedly slow because of the relatively long delivery distances (up to 100 m), the bulldozer speeded up considerably construction of the dikes and also facilitated more efficient utilization of the manual labour available.

By the time the consultant departed (mid February 1983) about 56 percent of the stone masonry feeder canal system, two broodstock ponds (0.30 ha surface area each), the filter/ reservoir pond of the hatchery, the outdoor ward-tanks and the indoor fixed installations of the hatchery were completed and put into operation. Two more broodstock ponds (0.21 and 0.29 ha respectively), the biggest nursery pond (0.41 ha), the main drainage canal of the broodstock and nursery ponds and the drainage canal of the hatchery (complete with their structures) were close to completion. Detailed designs of all the pond units to be constructed (including the 7 fingerling ponds not covered by the present project document) and their structures, their feeder and drainage canals were elaborated by the consultant and left with the local engineer who continues to be responsible for the uninterrupted construction work. He is assisted by 4 fishery assistants also trained by the consultant to direct and supervise dike and canal construction. Completion of the pond construction by the local personnel is thus guaranteed, provided adequate funding by the Government is made available.

Early exhaustion of Government funds allocated for construction caused problems towards the end of 1982. Unexpected progress in construction and in procurement of construction materials (prefabricated RCC tubes, stone, brick, cement, etc.) depleted the funds of the Regional Animal Husbandry Office, and before the start of the new financial year (March 1983) only moderate reallocation of funds was expected. In consultation with the local project management the decision was, therefore, taken to continue pond construction but stop or postpone construction of building/office-cum-laboratory, garage-workshop, residences, even the hatchery walls and roof. The consultant's services were not essential in this respect; with the ground plan and some important technical specifications for these buildings prepared by the consultant, an experienced local engineer will be able to elaborate the detailed designs and a local foreman to supervise the construction.

Based on the above decision, only the construction of the garage-workshop building was started in December 1983 as it was planned to serve as a temporary store for valuable materials and to house a chowkidar during the construction period. Due attention was given, however, to the timely construction of the fixed installations of the hatchery (ward-tanks, water supply, floor-canals, etc.) and all of these were completed before the consultant's departure. Local project management thus will be able to construct the walls and the roof of the hatchery building later when adequate funds are available.

The project document provides for the construction of one pigsty above the first nursery pond by the end of the construction period. However, in consultation with the local project management, the consultant revised his former proposal and advised the counterpart engineer to concentrate around one centre all the pigsties to be constructed so as to facilitate transportation, food supply, proper management and continuous supervision of the animals. Guidelines for construction of the pigsties were also left with the local engineer.

Construction of residences was also envisaged in the first project period. In consultation with local project personnel, the number and type of residences to be constructed was agreed (one for the officer-in-charge, one for a fishery inspector and 4 in a single blockhouse for fishery assistants and/or chowkidars). The construction of these residences was shifted to 1983 for reasons discussed previously, but the consultant left his draft proposals with the local engineer.


Importation of genetically valuable fish breeders and breeder candidates from Nepal, India and Hungary was scheduled only after the completion of the hatchery and the broodstock ponds. However, in order to speed up development of the Centre's sexually matured broodstock, immediately after the completion of the first broodstock pond a mission to Nepal was organized and, with the kind cooperation of the Royal Government of Nepal, 6 sexually matured common carp breeders and several hundred Chinese carp yearlings of all three species (silver carp, bighead carp and grass carp) were imported from the Balaju and Hetauda fishfarms. Further deliveries from India and Hungary were arranged by initiating Field Purchase Orders sent to the Freshwater Aquaculture Research and Training Centre (Dhauli, India) and the Fish Culture Research Institute (Szarvas, Hungary).

The original workplan of the project envisaged provision of an improved pig variety for the demonstration of the integrated fish-cum-pig production. In consultation with the project management it was decided to supply piglets from the valuable stock of the Animal Husbandry Department's piggery at Sarbhang immediately after completion of the pigsties above the fingerling ponds. It is not feasible to maintain pig broodstock at the Centre, but Sarbhang will be able to cover all the piglet requirements in the long term. The Centre also has to rely upon the expertise of the Sarbhang pig farm, as it would not be feasible to hire an independent piggery manager for the Centre's relatively small stock.

Purchasing of equipment started well before the arrival of the consultant with an order for a project vehicle on 14 July 1982. The Toyota Land Cruiser arrived at Phuntsholing in the third week of December 1982 and the project started to use it on 4 January 1983. The vehicle proved its suitability for live fish transport when delivering the first fish breeders on a non-stop journey from Kathmandu to Gaylegphug in February 1983.

In spite of local shortages in office equipment and supplies, it was decided not to import these before the completion of the office-cum-laboratory building. The consultant recommended that the consultants be recruited later in order to purchase office equipment (typewriter, calculator, slide projector, etc.) using mainly equipment available in the FAO stock-room.

Similarly, funds have to be reserved for minor hatchery equipment to be ordered by the aquaculturist expert to be recruited in 1984. Nevertheless, most of the hatchery equipment and supplies must be at the site when the breeding season starts in 1984. The consultant, therefore, prepared a detailed list of hatchery and fish-farm equipment and supplies, checked the local availability of all these items in cooperation with the project management, completed Field Purchase Orders and Purchase Requisition forms for those which have to be imported. Taking into account the unusually difficult delivery conditions of the country, the consultant proposed to procure and deliver most of the equipment of the hatchery and the fish farm as a package, using a standard container hired for this purpose by the forwarding agent. This would have the advantage of complete and safe delivery of equipment and supplies tailored to the specific requirements of the project with a minimal risk of losses and also minimal administrative problems. The local authorities and also the UN Resident Representative in Bhutan accepted the proposal, the Purchase Requisition was completed accordingly and handcarried to the FAO Headquarters in Rome by the consultant in February 1983.

Some minor items which are not readily available in Hungary (e.g., centrifugal blower, small live fish transport tanks, fish tranquillizer, basic books in English on fish culture, etc.) were also ordered by the consultant who handcarried these Field Purchase Order forms to Rome.

When preparing the above orders it became obvious that the UNDP funds originally allocated for equipment would not cover the requirements of the project, although the original list of equipment and supplies was not extended. On the contrary, Government funds were used in every possible case. The consultant, therefore, proposed increasing the UNDP input on this line by US$ 13 100.


The consultant rendered essential assistance to the national project manager in producing the year-end UNDP Project Progress Report. This was submitted to the UNDP Office in Thimbu on 18 January 1983.

Although the project has not had an official Tripartite Review in 1982, the UNDP Office in Thimbu organized an informal progress review at the project site from 28 to 30 January 1983. During the detailed discussions a revised work programme of the project was agreed and also a revised budget was elaborated and accepted (Appendixes 1 and 2). The UNDP will forward these documents to FAO through the appropriate channels.


As already mentioned in paragraph 3.3, the major constraint to construction was the lack of a bulldozer. Although an adequate number of manual labourers were hired, progress was unexpectedly slow because of the relatively long delivery distances. The Animal Husbandry Department was not able to acquire a Government-owned bulldozer; however, there is a possibility to purchase one later by using funds of a bilateral Australian-Bhutanese agreement (this equipment has already been ordered). It has to be emphasized that without the continuous use of a bulldozer the construction could not be completed according to the revised work-plan.

Although temporary exhaustion of Government funds delayed construction of certain buildings, the pond construction itself progressed ahead of schedule. The leaders of the interested Governmental agencies (Animal Husbandry Department, Planning Commission, Budget Bureau) discussed the problems in Thimbu on 6 January 1983, and at the site on 10 February 1983. Based on these discussions, suitable action was taken even before the new financial year in order to proceed with the construction. The view of the consultant was accepted, and it was decided to provide funding in the next financial year for the continued construction also of the fingerling ponds, which were not originally included in the project document and its budget.


The following recommendations were discussed and agreed with the local project management, with the Government agencies concerned and with UNDP Thimbu.

Appendix 1

1. Construction   
(a) broodstock ponds (4 units)---April  
(b) hatchery---April  
(c) nursery ponds (5 units)Jan.-Dec.  
(d) fingerling ponds (7 units)March -------------May 
(e) pigsties (5 units)Sept.  -------------May 
(f) office-cum-laboratoryApr.-Nov.  
(g) residencesMay-Dec.  
2. International staff   
(a) aquaculturist March-Aug. 
(b) extension expert  March-August
3. Training   
(a) fellowship (Philippines)Apr.-Sept.  
(b) in-service (3 + 3, Nepal)Apr.-JulyApr.-July 
(c) group-training (local) Aug.-Oct. 
(d) group training (abroad) Nov.     Nov.
4. Purchasing   
(a) fish broodstockAprilApril 
(b) equipmentApr.-Sept.Apr.-Sept. 
5. Extension   
(a) demonstration ponds April -----------------------
(b) distribution of fish fry June------------------------

Appendix 2

Country: Bhutan
Project No.: BHU/80/007
Title: Establishment of Fish Seed Production Centre

10.Project Personnel            
11.01 Fish culture consultant210 908210 908 - - - -
11.02 Fishpond engineer17 25617 256 - - - -
11.03 Aquaculturist633 000 - - -633 000 -
11.04 Aquaculturist engineer424 000 -212 000212 000 - -
11.05 Extension expert633 000 - - - -633 000
11.99 Sub-total19108 164318 164212 000212 000633 000633 000
13. Administrative support 140 140 - - - -
15. Official travel - - - - - -
16. Mission costs 3 000 - - - - 3 000
19. Component total 111 304 18 304 12 000 12 000 33 000 36 000
30. Training            
31. Individual fellowship - - - - - -
32.1 Group training (local)201 300 - - -1065010650
32.2 Group training (abroad)2010 000 - - -105 000105 000
33. In-service training2412 000 - -126 000126 000 -
39. Component total 23 300 - - 6 000 11 650 5 650
40. Equipment            
  Broodfish 5 000 - - 2 500 2 500 -
  Hatchery and fishfarm equipment 40 000 - 14 000 26 000 - -
  Miscellaneous supplies 2 100 - - 1 100 500 500
  Books, journals 2 000 - - 1 000 1 000 -
49. Component total 49 100 - 14 000 30 600 4 000 500
50. Miscellaneous 6 325 325 1 000 1 500 1 500 2 000
59. Component total 6 325 325 1 000 1 500 1 500 2 000
99. Grand total 190 029 18 629 27 000 50 100 50 150 44 150

Appendix 3

In close cooperation with the National Project Manager to assist in and be responsible for:

Appendix 4

In close cooperation with the National Project Manager and with other officials of the Animal Husbandry Department to assist in and to be responsible for:

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