At work with Alison: fish farming

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WALLACE, W.Va. (WDTV) - At Rainbowhead Farms in Wallace they don't grow corn, or raise cattle or sheep, instead, this farm raises fish.

One of the over 10 ponds on the property that house the fish.

"We typically deliver 95 percent of the fish that we raise and we go all over the state," said owner Mike Nardella.

Nardella got his start in the industry over 20 years ago.

"I've always been interested in Biology and fish, and I wanted to do this for a long time."

Raising fish is an extremely labor and time intensive business.

"There's a lot of maintenance involved with the tanks indoors."

At Rainbowhead Farms they raise thousands of fish and have over 15 species.

"Large mouth bass, yellow perch, red ear sunfish," he said, naming just a few.

"Every day, before we do anything else, we feed the fish. That includes all of the fish inside, and all the fish outside in the ponds."

Occasionally, people purchase the fish for food. Mainly, though, the fish at this farm go towards stocking private ponds for fishing.

"We get a lot of parents or grandparents wanting to stock their ponds so the kids can have an opportunity to fish and do something outdoors."

Sometimes, Nardella gets requests from the DNR to help stock streams and lakes when a natural fish population gets too low.

"When certain fish are void from an ecosystem, it affects the balance."

Nardella loves being around the fish and says his job is a peaceful-but-fun way to make a living.

"There's a lot of satisfaction and gratification knowing that you're raising a good product."

Want to purchase fish from Rainbowhead Farms? Check out the related link to see all of the fish they offer.