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NCKU recovers populations of rice fish in Tainan to fight dengue (news)

Tainan, Taiwan, September 9, 2015

A total of 30 rice fish was recently introduced from National Taiwan Ocean University (NTOU) to National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) as an effort to recover populations of the fish, endemic to Taiwan, which may provide a solution to Tainan’s dengue fever outbreak.

A breeding program kicks off at the College of Bioscience and Biotechnology, NCKU, immediately after NTOU professor of marine biology and environmental science Yi-Hsiung Chen personally delivered the 30 specimens to the institute and demonstrated the uses of the rice fish in tanks on September 3.

Joint efforts by NCKU and NTOU to recover populations of rice fish, endemic to Taiwan may provide a solution to Tainan’s dengue fever outbreak.

Chen said, breeding the rice fish and introducing them to counties across the country with dengue outbreaks may help control the problem.

According to Prof. Tzen-Yuh Chiang of life sciences at NCKU, the rice fish is native to Taiwan and once flourished in rice paddies across the nation but their numbers had rapidly dwindled due to the widespread use of pesticides.

Tainan City Government noticed the efforts NCKU took to fight dengue and supported the natural solution which might reduce the larvae of the mosquitoes responsible for spreading dengue fever.

NTOU acquired 20 specimens about six months ago from rice paddies in New Taipei City’s rural areas, and the university’s team has been breeding the fish in Gongliao District, according to Chen.

He said, the breeding program was successful and the specimen count has increased to between 700 and 800 fish.

Chen added that with prolonged breeding programs it was possible the researchers could increase the number of fish to 5,000 or even 10,000.
Provider : NCKU News
Date : 2015/09/09
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