An Israeli kibbutz settlement has succeeded in "growing" fish in the desert. The minor "miracle"?
An Israeli kibbutz settlement has succeeded in "growing" fish in the desert. The minor "miracle" is the result of many years of hard work by members of the Dan Kibbutz near the Syrian border.
The project began in 1947 but met with failure after raids by Palestine guerrillas succeeded in blowing up the basins where the fish were kept.
But after the Six Day War in 1967 the area became comparatively safe and the settlers on Dan Kibbutz built their complex of dams and "water runs" and began breeding the trout.
They took waters from nearby mountain streams and pressed into the basins creating the conditions of a mountain stream where the trout could swim and jump against the current.
Trout eggs were imported from Norway and Italy and in 1968 the fish farmers had set two world records by raising more than four hundred tons of trout per acre - and achieving this in eleven months instead of the usual twenty-four.
The reason for this startling success lies in the little known secret of keeping the water at a steady fifteen degrees all year round, and the fish then go on believing its an all-year-round summer, so they continue to eat and grow.
In Europe, where the water temperature often drops below five degrees Celsius, the fish stop eating and "sleep out the cold weather".
Now the demand for the Kibbutz trout has grown as fast as the fish, and demands for the little delicacies are pouring in from all over Europe as well as local restaurants.
Airline companies have also put in a demand for the trout from the Kibbutz.
So much has the demand for the fish risen that the Kibbutz fish farmers are now building more basins and water runs and with trout prices in Europe rising continuously there appears a great future for the trout industry.