Catfish Production: Water Surface Acres Down 3%

Catfish Ponds. Photo: LSU AgCenter

The water surface area to be used for catfish production in the three major producing States (Alabama, Arkansas, and Mississippi) during July 1 through December 31, 2021, totaled 53,200 acres, down 3 percent from a year ago.

Acres used for Foodsize fish totaled 41,700, down 4 percent from the same time period in 2020. Acres used for Fingerling production at 6,840 acres, are up 3 percent, and acres for Broodfish at 1,605 acres, are up 5 percent.

Of the total acres in production, 2,705 acres were scheduled to be renovated from July 1 to December 31, 2021 compared with 685 acres taken out of production during the period of January 1 through June 30, 2021.

Foodsize Inventory Up 4 Percent

Catfish operations in the three major producing States had 110 million Foodsize fish on hand on July 1, 2021, up 4 percent from July 1, 2020. The breakouts of Foodsize fish inventory numbers on July 1, 2021, with their respective percent change from the previous year were: Large foodsize at 3.15 million fish, up 27 percent; Medium foodsize at 28.1 million fish, up 7 percent; and Small foodsize at 79.1 million fish, up 3 percent.

The three major Catfish producing States also had 615,000 Broodfish on hand on July 1, 2021, up 19 percent from last year’s 515,000 Broodfish.
Catfish operations in the three major producing States had 317 million Stockers on hand on July 1, 2021, down 2 percent from the July 1, 2020 total of 325 million Stockers.

The breakouts of Stocker fish inventory numbers on July 1, 2021, with their respective change from the previous year were: Large stockers at 149 million fish, up slightly from the previous year and Small stockers at 169 million fish, down 5 percent from last year.

Producers had 463 million Fingerlings and fry on hand on July 1, 2021, down 1 percent from July 1, 2020.

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