Effect of fish in rice-fish culture on the rice yield

Abstract

Rice-fish culture, which means the simultaneous culture of rice and fish, is one of the best options to increase food production from limited land and is practiced in many countries in the world. Although many researchers and farmers believe that the rice yield is increased by fish farming in paddy fields, this hypothesis has never been fully tested. Here, we report ecological processes leading to higher rice yields in the rice-fish culture using crucian carp (Carassius complex), which have adapted to the paddy field ecosystem in Japan. We compare the rice-fish and rice-only plots in the experimental paddy field for biota, water quality, and rice yield. Coverage of duckweed and densities of zooplankton and benthic invertebrates in the rice-fish plots were lower than those in the rice-only plots, indicating that fish utilized them as food. NO3–N concentration in the rice-fish plots was higher than that in the rice-only plots, indicating that the increase in NO3–N concentration results from excretion of unutilized food nutrients by the fish. Consequently, rice yield in the rice-fish plots was 20% higher than that in the rice-only plots. The fertilizing effect of the fish excrement probably increased rice yield.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4

References

  1. 1.

    Jintong Y (1995) Rice-fish culture and its macrodevelopment in ecological agriculture. In: MacKay KT (ed) Rice-fish culture in China. International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Ottawa

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2.

    Shugen P, Zhechun H, Jicheng Z (1995) Ecological mechanisms for increasing rice and fish production. In: MacKay KT (ed) Rice-fish culture in China. International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Ottawa, pp 195–200

    Google Scholar 

  3. 3.

    Halwart M, Gupta MV (2004) Culture of fish in rice fields. FAO, Rome

  4. 4.

    Li K (1992) Rice-fish farming systems in China: past, present and future. In: dela Crus CR et al. (eds) Proceedings of ICLARM conference on rice-fish research and development in Asia, vol 24. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 17–26

  5. 5.

    Cai R, Ni D, Wang J (1995) Rice-fish culture in China: the past, present, and future. In: MacKay KT (ed) Rice-fish culture in China. International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Ottawa, pp 3–14

    Google Scholar 

  6. 6.

    Lu J, Li X (2006) Review of rice-fish-farming systems in China—one of the Globally Important Ingenious Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS). Aquaculture 260:106–113

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Lightfoot C, van Dam A, Costa-Pierce BA (1992) What’s happening to the rice yields in rice-fish systems? In: dela Crus CR et al. (eds) Proceedings of ICLARM conference on rice-fish research and development in Asia, vol 24. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 177–183

  8. 8.

    Yinhe P (1995) Ecological effects of rice-fish culture. In: MacKay KT (ed) Rice-fish culture in China. International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Ottawa, pp 189–194

    Google Scholar 

  9. 9.

    Frei M, Becker K (2005) Integrated rice-fish culture: coupled production saves resources. Nat Resour Forum 29:135–143

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. 10.

    Berg H (2001) Pesticide use in rice and rice-fish farms in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam. Crop Prot 20:897–905

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Berg H (2002) Rice monoculture and integrated rice-fish farming in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam—economic and ecological considerations. Ecol Econ 41:95–107

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12.

    Taylor SR, Pakdee B, Klampratum D (1988) Border method and fish culture: synergistic effects on the yield of rice grain. In: Pullin RSV et al. (eds) The second international symposium on tilapia in aquaculture. Proceedings of ICLARM conference, vol 15. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 91–98

  13. 13.

    van Dam AA (1990) Multiple regression analysis of accumulated data from aquaculture experiments: a rice-fish culture example. Aquac Fish Manag 21:1–15

    Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Haroon AKY, Dewan S, Karim SMR (1992) Rice-fish production systems in Bangladesh. In: dela Crus CR et al. (eds) Proceedings of ICLARM conference on rice-fish research and development in Asia, vol 24. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 165–171

  15. 15.

    Haroon AKY, Pittman KA (1997) Rice-fish culture: feeding, growth and yield of two size classes of Puntius gonionotus Bleeker and Oreochromis spp. in Bangladesh. Aquaculture 154:261–281

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. 16.

    Rothuis AJ, Duong LT, Richter CJJ, Ollevier F (1998) Polyculture of silver barb, Puntius gonionotus (Bleeker), Nile tilapia Oreochromis niloticus (L.), and common carp, Cyprinus carpio L., in Vietnamese ricefields: feeding ecology and impact on rice and ricefield environment. Aquac Res 29:649–660

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Vromant N, Rothuis AJ, Cuc NTT, Ollevier F (1998) The effect of fish on the abundance of the rice caseworm Nymphula depunctalis (Guenée) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) in direct seeded, concurrent rice-fish fields. Biocontrol Sci Technol 8:539–546

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    Rothuis AJ, Vromant N, Xuan VT, Richter CJJ, Ollevier F (1999) The effect of rice seeding rate on rice and fish production, and weed abundance in direct-seeded rice-fish culture. Aquaculture 172:255–274

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Vromant N, Duong LT, Ollevier F (2002) Effects of fish on the yield and yield components of rice in integrated concurrent rice-fish systems. J Agric Sci 138:63–71

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Frei M, Becker K (2005) A greenhouse experiment on growth and yield effects in integrated rice-fish culture. Aquaculture 244:119–128

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Ofori J, Abban EK, Otoo E, Wakatsuki T (2005) Rice-fish culture: an option for smallholder Sawah rice farmers of the West African lowlands. Ecol Eng 24:235–241

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Yaro I, Lamai SL, Oladimeji AA (2005) The effect of different fertilizer treatments on water quality parameters in rice-cum-fish culture systems. J Appl Ichthyol 21:399–405

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    Frei M, Khan MAM, Razzak MA, Hossain MM, Dewan S, Becker K (2007) Effects of a mixed culture of common carp Cyprinus carpio L., and Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (L.), on terrestrial arthropod population, benthic fauna, and weed biomass in rice fields in Bangladesh. Biol Control 41:207–213

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. 24.

    Frei M, Razzak MA, Hossain MM, Oehme M, Dewan S, Becker K (2007) Performance of common carp, Cyprinus carpio L. and Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (L.) in integrated rice-fish culture in Bangladesh. Aquaculture 262:250–259

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Vromant N, Chau NTH (2005) Overall effect of rice biomass and fish on the aquatic ecology of experimental rice plots. Agric Ecosyst Environ 111:153–165

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Edwards P, Little DC, Demaine H (2002) Rural aquaculture. CABI, Oxfordshire

    Google Scholar 

  27. 27.

    Kuronuma K (1980) Carp culture in Japanese rice fields. In: Pullin RSV et al. (eds) Proceedings of ICLARM conference on integrated agriculture–aquaculture farming systems, vol 4. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 167–174

  28. 28.

    Kumakawa S (2003) Symbiosis of fish and rice in paddy field: ‘improved crucian carp culture’ and ‘crucian carp rice’ in Saku, Shinshu (in Japanese). Aqua Net 61:46–49

    Google Scholar 

  29. 29.

    Ichikawa T (2006) Saku carp—description of paleography (in Japanese). Saku 48 (49):4–21

    Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Saitoh K, Katano O, Koizumi A (1988) Movement and spawning of several freshwater fishes in temporary waters around paddy fields (in Japanese with English abstract). Jpn J Ecol 38:35–47

    Google Scholar 

  31. 31.

    Katano O, Hosoya K, Iguchi K, Aonuma Y (2001) Comparison of fish fauna among three types of rice fields in the Chikuma River basin (in Japanese with English abstract). Jpn J Ichthyol 48:19–25

    Google Scholar 

  32. 32.

    Katano O, Hosaya K, Iguchi K, Yamaguchi M, Aonuma Y, Kitano S (2003) Species diversity and abundance of freshwater fishes in irrigation ditches around rice fields. Environ Biol Fish 66:107–121

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. 33.

    Kiefer J (1975) Balanced block designs and generalized Youden designs, I. construction (patchwork). Ann Stat 3:109–118

    Article  Google Scholar 

  34. 34.

    Steinman AD, Lamberti GA (1996) Biomass and pigments of benthic algae. In: Hauer FR et al (eds) Methods in stream ecology. Academic Press, San Diego, pp 295–313

    Google Scholar 

  35. 35.

    Tsuruta T, Tada T, Kotera N, Akagawa I, Iguchi K (2009) Effects of predators and herbicides on community structure of benthic invertebrates in paddy fields around the Chikuma River (in Japanese with English abstract). Jpn J Limnol 70:1–11

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  36. 36.

    Krebs CJ (1989) Ecological methodology. Harper Collins, New York

    Google Scholar 

  37. 37.

    Iwakuma T, Othuki A (1991) Role of chironomod larvae in reducing rate of nutrient release from lake sediment: evaluation by a mathematical model. Verh Int Verein Limnol 24:3056–3062

    Google Scholar 

  38. 38.

    Lightfoot C, Roger PA, Cagauan AG, dela Cruz CR (1993) Preliminary steady-state nitrogen models of a wetland ricefield ecosystem with and without fish. In: Christensen V et al. (eds) Proceedings of ICLARM conference on trophic models of aquatic ecosystems, vol 26. International Center for Living Aquatic Resources Management, Manila, pp 56–64

  39. 39.

    Vromant N, Chau NTH, Ollevier F (2001) The effect of rice seeding rate and fish stocking on the floodwater ecology of the rice field in direct-seeded, concurrent rice-fish systems. Hydrobiologia 445:151–164

    Article  Google Scholar 

  40. 40.

    Takamura N, Li J-L, Yang H-Q, Zhu X-B, Miura T (1993) A novel approach to evaluate feeding by mixed cyprinid species in a Chinese integrated fish culture pond using measurements of chlorophyll derivatives and photosynthesis in gut contents. Can J Fish Aquat Sci 50:946–952

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. 41.

    Xie S, Li Z, Cui Y, Murphy BR (2005) Distribution, feeding and body condition of four small fish species in the near-shore and central areas of Liangzi Lake, China. Environ Biol Fish 74:379–387

    Article  Google Scholar 

  42. 42.

    Hirai K (1972) Ecological studies on fry and juvenile of fishes at aquatic plant areas in a bay of Lake Biwa III. Relationship of the food habits to the habitat of nigorobuna (Carassius carassius glandoculis) larvae (in Japanese with English abstract). Jpn J Ecol 22:69–93

    Google Scholar 

  43. 43.

    Wada G (1969) The effect of nitrogenous nutrition on the yield-determining process of rice plant (in Japanese with English abstract). Bull Natl Inst Agric Sci Ser A 16:27–167

    Google Scholar 

  44. 44.

    Murayama N (1969) Nitrogen nutrition of rice plant. JARQ 3:1–4

    Google Scholar 

  45. 45.

    Kamiji Y, Horie T (1989) Nitrogen dynamics in soil-crop system and grain production processes in rice. Influence of nitrogen pattern as induced by its different application on the growth and yield formation processes. J Agric Sci Tokyo Agric Univ 33:171–180

    Google Scholar 

  46. 46.

    Horie T, Ohnishi M, Angus JF, Lewin LG, Tsukaguchi T, Matano T (1997) Physiological characteristics of high-yielding rice inferred from cross-location experiments. Field Crops Res 52:55–67

    Article  Google Scholar 

  47. 47.

    Kropff MJ, Cassman KG, van Laar HH, Peng S (1993) Nitrogen and yield potential of irrigated rice. Plant Soil 155:391–394

    Article  Google Scholar 

  48. 48.

    Yoshida S (1981) Fundamentals of rice crop science. IRRI, Philippines

    Google Scholar 

  49. 49.

    Sinhababu DP, Ghosh BC, Panda MM, Reddy BB (1983) Effect of fish on growth and yield of rice under rice-fish culture. Oryza 20:144–150

    Google Scholar 

  50. 50.

    Panda MM, Ghosh BC, Sinhababu DP (1987) Uptake of nutrients by rice under rice-cum-fish culture in intermediate deep water situation (up to 50-cm water depth). Plant Soil 102:131–132

    Article  Google Scholar 

  51. 51.

    Oehme M, Frei M, Razzak MA, Dewan S, Becker K (2007) Studies on nitrogen cycling under different nitrogen inputs in integrated rice-fish culture in Bangladesh. Nutr Cycl Agroecosyst 79:181–191

    Article  Google Scholar 

  52. 52.

    Chapman G, Fernando CH (1994) The diets and related aspects of feeding of Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus L.) and common carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) in lowland rice fields in northeast Thailand. Aquaculture 123:281–307

    Article  Google Scholar 

  53. 53.

    Iguchi K, Tsuruta T, Takahashi D, Sato T (2009) Evaluation of public option on rice cultivation with crucian carp through a sensory test of cooked rice (in Japanese with English abstract). Nippon Suisan Gakkaishi 75:1–5

    Article  Google Scholar 

  54. 54.

    Dey MM, Prein M (2005) Increased income from seasonally flooded rice fields through community based fish culture in Bangladesh and Vietnam. Plant Prod Sci 8:349–353

    Article  Google Scholar 

  55. 55.

    Dwiyana E, Mendoza TC (2006) Comparative productivity, profitability and efficiency of rice monoculture and rice-fish culture systems. J Sustain Agr 29:145–166

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

We wish to thank the staff of Saku Statistical Information Center, Kanto Regional Agricultural Administration Office for technical assistance in the investigation of rice yield. We thank the students of the Faculty of Eco-Tourism, Nagano University, and the staff of National Research Institute of Fisheries Science, Ueda Station, for their help in the rice transplanting. We are also grateful to Ms. T. Hazama for her help during the study.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Tetsuya Tsuruta.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Tsuruta, T., Yamaguchi, M., Abe, Si. et al. Effect of fish in rice-fish culture on the rice yield. Fish Sci 77, 95–106 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12562-010-0299-2

Download citation

Keywords

  • Crucian carp
  • Ecological agriculture
  • Sustainable farming system
  • Nitrogen
  • Paddy field ecosystem
  • Biodiversity
  • Multifunctionality