Mon. Jun 27th, 2022
sorting your catfish

Cost of starting a catfish farm

The cost of starting a catfish farm in Nigeria depends on the scope or size of the farm. Today we will estimate the cost of starting a 1000 capacity catfish farm.

The good part is you can conveniently start the operation in your backyard without much stress. There are three major things you need, space for a large water tank, clean water and a pumping machine.

Thing you need to start a catfish farm

We will list everything you need to start a catfish businesss in your backyard. The fist thing is a large plastic tank, pumping machine, well or borehole, fish, scale and fish feed.

Cost of starting a catfish farm
Catfish Business with Plastic Tanks

Things you need

  1. Large plastic tank
  2. Pumping machine
  3. Well or borehole
  4. Juvenile catfish
  5. Fish feed
  6. Measuring scale

Cost of starting a catfish farm

Water source

Make sure the water source is clean and able to sustain aquatic life. Basic water source is either from a well or a borehole. Let’s assume you are starting on an empty plot so you need to dig a well or sink a borehole.

It is better to sink a borehole for better water quality and supply. In Nigeria the cost of sinking a borehole depends on the geology. If you are in Lagos a borehole will cost from N100,000 to N150,000. The last borehole we sank in Amuwo LCG in December 2021 cost N90,000.

Water pump

You need a pumping machine to carry the water from the well or borehole to your tank. Cost of a water pump January 2022 is N65,000.

Plastic tank

There are different types of tanks suitable for catfish production, however the plastic water tank is very clean and efficient.

Before we go into why you should use a plastic tank we will briefly mention the different types of fish tanks. If you are not a tenant and own the land you can build block or concrete pond. Block ponds are very good but require putting up a structure whereas all you need to install a plastic pond is space.

Cost of plastic fish pond

There are plastic tanks specifically made for fish farming. All you need is a large plastic tank a little plumbing for the inlet at the top and outlet where you let out the water. The inlet is where you pump water into the tank, the outlet where you remove water through a tap.

If you don’t get a purposefully built plastic water tank , all you need is to convert a regular tank by cutting off the top. A large plastic tank in January 2022 costs N100,000 NGN to N120,000 NGN.

Stocking the pond

To stock your pond you need to buy fingerlings or juveniles. Best place to buy them are from fish breeders. Luckily all you need to do is find one in your area or use the internet.

Before you buy go to the farm to see them and make sure the farmer selects the healthy ones preferably shooters.

Cost of Juvenile catfish is N25 to N30, therefore 1000 catfish at N30 is N30,000.

Catfish feed

Feeding catfish is the most expensive part of the operation, however if you are careful with the feeding you will spend less.
It takes about 10 bags to grow 1000 catfish from juveniles to full adult 1kg. Make sure you start with the best catfish food for better results.

Catfish feed comes in different sizes to accommodate the fish size. Pellet sizes are from 0.8, 2mm, 4mm, 6mm, etc. depends on the size of fish.

Cost of 1 bag of Coppens is N18,000 for 15 kg while cost of 1 bag of 15kg Blue crown is N10,000.

A bag of 15 kg fish food should feed 1000 catfish for 3 to 4 weeks.

Measure scale

Catfish farmers sell their stock retail or wholesale. To sell in bulk you need a measuring scale, it costs from N10,000 to N12,000 to buy a measuring scale.

Cost analysis for starting a 1000 capacity catfish farm

  1. Borehole N120,000
  2. Water pump N65,000
  3. Plátic tànk. N120,000
  4. 1000 catfish. N30,000
  5. 1kg-1month. N11,000
  6. Scale. N10,000 Total. N356,000

How long to grow catfish to 1kg?

It takes 5 to 6 months to grow catfish to 1kg

How many bags of fish feed to grow catfish to 1kg

You need from 10 to 12 bags

How much can you sell you fish?

What size of feed for Juvenile catfish?

Feed juvenile Catfish from 0.8mm to 2mm pellet feed.

Current price of 1kg catfish is from N1000 to N1200, therefore 1000 table size 1kg fish @ N1000 = N1,000,000.


From the above analysis cost of starting a catfish farm in Nigeria for 1000 fish is N356,000. The good news is that once you have the facility all you need is to do is stock grow and sell. The only recurring costs are cost of stocking and feeding the fish.

By Femi

webmaster with passion for good content