Police patrols can reduce fish poaching. Image credit flickr.com

ZIMSEC O Level Geography Notes: Natural Resources: Fishing:Fish conservation

  • The fishing industry in the SADC region can only be sustained if sustainable methods are employed.
  • The following methods of conservation have been put in place in the region.
  • Legislation has been enacted in most countries to conserve fisheries for example the size of gill nets has been limited to 76 mm in Zambia to allow small fish to escape with only mature fish being caught.
  • Fish permits in Zimbabwe have to be renewed annually to enable government to regulate the number of fishing companies in line with the levels of fish in Lake Kariba.
  • The involvement of locals in the management of fish resources for example CAMPFIRE programme in Zimbabwe has helped to conserve the resource.
  • The limiting of the fishing season also allow fish to spawn under protected conditions.
  • The introduction of fish-farming or aquaculture helps to conserve fish resources.
  • The United Nation Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has spearheaded the aquaculture for local community development programmes to develop fish farming in SADC.
  • The major fish species used in fish farming are the bream (Tilapia), catfish and trout.
  • In Zimbabwe there are trout hatcheries at Troutbeck near Inyanga.
  • The fish farming at Troutbeck started in 1975 and produces up to 45 tonnes of trout per year.
  • Some trout has been introduced into rivers of the Eastern Highlands for recreational fishing as well as subsistence farming.
  • Tilapia was introduced into Zimbabwe from Israel in 1981, while the catfish from USA was introduced in 1983.
  • A number of aquaculture venture have been established on both commercial farms and communal areas in Zimbabwe using these species.
  • Fish farming has often been integrated with poultry and vegetable farming.
  • Commercial bream (Tilapia) aquaculture has been tried in Zambia, Malawi and Tanzania.
  • In Malawi, aquaculture is integrated with pig farming.
  • Oyster farming has been carried out in Namibia and shrimp farming in Mozambique.
  • Lake harvest aquaculture farm in Kariba in Zimbabwe is an Export Processing Zone company producing fish for both the local and export market.
  • Due to challenges like shortage of fuel and cheap fish imports to local markets, the company has diversified into production of soya beans and maize to supplement its fish feed requirements, as well as venturing into poultry and crocodile farming.

To access more topics go to the O Level Geography Notes page