Climate is an important factor for aquaculture
production. This study aimed to understand how farmers that culture tilapia in
earthen ponds perceive and respond to climate impacts. Important
climate-related risks identified include extreme temperatures (hot and cold),
excessive rainfall, prolonged cloud cover, flood and drought. Site visits and
data collection using questionnaires were conducted to identify important
factors influencing farm profits, losses, decision to increase or decrease ponds.
Special attention was given to knowledge about fish markets and weather and the
impacts of weather and climate on fish growth, disease outbreaks and water
quality in ponds. Altogether 585 fish farms in four provinces in northern part
of Thailand selected to cover a range of elevations above sea level and thus
climate were surveyed (Nakornsawan< 100 m, Lampang 100-300 m,
Phayao 300-500 m and Chiang Mai > 500 m). Fish farms at different elevations
reported different climate and weather-related impacts. In the area where
elevation above sea level is < 100 m, farmers were affected more by floods
and extreme hot weather which caused fish deaths and stress that reduced
feeding and growth rates. Conversely, fish farmers in the area where elevation
above sea level is >500 were impacted mainly by drought and cold weather.
These conditions also caused disease outbreaks and reduced feeding rates.
Farmers responded by reducing the amount of feed supplied and considering
non-fish pond or non-farm supplementary occupations as an adaptation strategy.
Among non-climate related factors high prices of feed were most commonly
identified as a key issue by farmers. The differences among sites at higher and
lower elevation provided insights into the kind of changes in risks farmers may
face as climate changes that could be helpful in developing adaptation
strategies for individual farmers and the sector as a whole.
Cite this paper
P. Pimolrat, N. Whangchai, C. Chitmanat, J. Promya and L. Lebel, "Survey of Climate-Related Risks to Tilapia Pond Farms in Northern Thailand," International Journal of Geosciences
, Vol. 4 No. 5, 2013, pp. 54-59. doi: 10.4236/ijg.2013.45B009
 R. Hamdan, F. Kari and A. Othman, “Climate Variability and Socioeconomic Vulnerability of Aquaculture Farmers in Malaysia,” Proceeding of the 2011 International Conference on Business and Economics Research, Singapore, 2011, pp. 47-52.
 P. J. Britz, T. Hecht and S. Mangold, “Effect of Temperature on Growth, Feed Consumption and Nutritional Indices of Haliotis midae Fed a Formulated Diet,” Aquaculture, Vol. 152, 1997, pp. 191-203.
 P. A. Azevedo, C. Y. Cho, S. Leeson and D. P. Bureau, “Effects of Feeding Level and Water Temperature on Growth, Nutrient and Energy Utilization and Waste Outputs of Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss),” Aquatic Living Resources, Vol. 11, No. 4, 1998, pp. 227-238.
 IPCC, “Climate Change 2001: Thescientific Basis,” Cambridge University Press, Oxford, 2001.
 B. Belton, D. Turongruang, R. Bhujel and D. C. Little, “The History, Status, and Future Prospects of Monosex Tilapia Culture in Thailand,” Aquaculture Asia Magazine, Vol. 16, 2009, pp. 16-19.
 A. V. Badyaev and C. K. Ghalambor, “Evolution of Life History along Elevation Gradients: Trade-Off between Parental Care and Fecundity,” Ecology, Vol. 82, No. 10, 2001, pp. 2948-2960.
 P. Lebel, S. Leudpasuk, L. Lebel and P. Chaibu, “Fish Cage Culture in Upper Part of Ping River,” Journal of Fisheries Technology, Vol. 1, No. 2, 2007, pp. 160-170.
 P. Lebel, P. Chaibu and L. Lebel, “Women Farm Fish: Gender and Commercial Fish Cage Culture on the Upper Ping River, Northern Thailand,” Gender, Technology and Development, Vol. 13, No. 2, 2009, pp. 199-224.
 V. T. Sulit, M. E. T. Aldon, I. T. Tendencia, A. M. J. Ortiz, S. B Alayon and A. S. Ledesma, “Regional Technical Consultation on the Aquaculture of P. vannamei and other Exotic Shrimps in Southeast Asia. Manila, Philippines,” Aquaculture Department, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center, 2005.
 C. L. Meays, “Elevation, Thermal Environment, and Stream Temperatures on Headwater Streams in Northeastern Oregon” Master Thesis, Oregon State University, 2000.
 J. H. Tidwell, S. Coyle, C. Weibel and J. Evans, “Effects and Interactions of Stocking Density and Added Substrate on Production and Population Structure of Freshwater Prawns Macrobrachium rosenbergii,” Journal of the World Aquaculture Society, Vol. 30, 1999, pp. 174-179.
 N. P. Pandit and M. Nakamura, “Effect of High Temperature on Survival, Growth and Feed Conversion Ratio of Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis Niloticus,” Our Nature, Vol. 8, 2010, pp. 219-224.
 M. N. Kutty, “Site Selection for Aquaculture: Climatic Factors,” 1987.
 J. Chervinski, “Environmental Physiology of Tilapias,” Proceeding of the Biology and Culture of Tilapia, ICLARM Conference, Manila, Philippines, 1982.
 T. Watanabe, T. Takeuchi, S. Satoh and V. Kiron, “Digestible Crude Protein Contents in Various Feedstuffs Determined with Four Freshwater Fish Species,” Fisheries Science, Vol. 62, 1996, pp. 278-282.
 W. J. Hauser, “Temperature Requirement of Tilapia,” California Fish and Game, Vol. 63, No. 4, 1977, pp. 228-233.
 J. C. Philippart and J. C. Ruwet, “Ecology and Distribution of Tilapias,” In: R. S. V. Pullin & R. H. Lowe-McConnell, Eds., The Biology and Culture of Tilapias, ICLARM, Manila, Philippines, 1982, pp. 15-60.
 HAII, “2011 Thailand Flood Executive Summary,” 2012.