To empower the First Scout Ranger Regiment (FSRR) and Wounded Soldiers Agriculture Cooperative (WSAC) in Camp Tecson, San Miguel, Bulacan, the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI), through the Aquaculture Research and Development Division (ARDD) conducted training on fish polyculture and fish cage culture technologies on April 19-20, 2023.

Thirty members from FSRR and WSAC underwent training on tilapia and hito polyculture and fish cage culture technology. The objective of the training was to provide a comprehensive introduction to the technology, grow-out operations, and cost and return analysis. This information was essential for the participants to gain insights into starting an aquaculture business.

Serving as resource speakers were Niko Macaraeg, a Science Research Specialist II, discussing polyculture of tilapia and hito; and Jennifer Poniente, also a Science Research Specialist II, on fish cage culture.

As part of the technical assistance for FSSR and WSAC, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources-National Freshwater Fisheries Technology Center (BFAR-NFTC) and NFRDI, through the Fisheries Biotechnology Center (FBC) and ARDD provided 10,000 mudfish fry and 500 tilapia fingerlings. This was made possible through the funding support of the DA-Biotechnology Program Office (BPO). The mudfish fry were stocked in their lagoon, while the tilapia fingerlings were stocked in their newly constructed pond.

The activity was headed by Dr. Joseph Christopher Rayos, chief of ARDD, and Dr. Casiano Choresca Jr., Career Scientist I and chief of FBC and Brackishwater Fisheries Research and Development Center together with Major Arnel Carandang (INF) PA and First Seargent HHsc Allan Espinosa.

The “Aquanegosyo at Turismo para sa mga Sundalo” livelihood project is a five-year initiative launched on June 16, 2021 in collaboration with BFAR 3, with the aim of benefiting FSRR and WSAC. The project will serve as a techno-demo fish farm in Camp Tecson, where technology transfer and commercialization of selected species and aquaculture technologies will be conducted to address the issues of food inflation, local tourism, and income generation. The project also seeks to pay tribute to the bravery and selflessness of wounded soldiers who fought for the country. ### (Niko Macaraeg and Gilda Joannah Calderon)