catfish aerators (Photo by MSU Extension Service/Kevin Hudson)
Intensively managed and split-cell catfish ponds are stocked at much higher rates and require more aeration to supply sufficient oxygen. These aerators were running on a Noxubee County, Miss., catfish farm on March 21, 2017.

Smaller catfish ponds intensify production

Many catfish producers in east Mississippi are intensifying their operations when renovating catfish ponds.

Mississippi has a long history of catfish production, but recent advances in management and production are changing the way some ponds look and operate.

Catfish ponds have traditionally been rectangular, shallow and large, usually about 10 acres of water. Today, some existing ponds are split in half to make two equal-sized, intensively managed ponds. Another new approach is to use levees to split ponds into cells, with fish raised in 20% of the area and the other 80% used as a lagoon

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