This project was initiated in 2009 to demonstrate how the wetland conservation practices could enhance both the biodiversity and livelihood of the local people. The project was carried out in the Veliamcode Panchayat of the Malappuram District. The interventions included converting the existing farming system to organic whereby the use of chemical pesticides was totally avoided. The paddy cultivation was integrated with fish farming and fishes like Rohu, Catla and Grass Carp were introduced. Vegetable garden in homesteads were also encouraged and inputs given by way of training on organic farming practices and planting materials.

The income of the local fishermen through fish catch during the season was over Rs.1 crore. The intervention of the Board by introducing the integrated paddy – fish cultivation as a sustainable model of enhancement of wetland biodiversity was well accepted by the local farmers and they determined to continue this programme. Also the farmers of the adjoining kole fields which were abandoned for years have started organic farming on their own encouraged by the success story of this project. This programme was documented and shown in Doordarshan.


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