Fishing using mosquito nets along the coast of Tanzania. Image credit

ZIMSEC O Level Geography Notes: Natural Resources: Fishing: Problems faced by sea fishing industry

  • The sea fishing industry in Southern Africa faces a number of problems which include the following.

Over-exploitation of marine resources particularly fish.

  • Fishing has increasingly become an important source of income and employment for many people in the region.
  • As the number of fishing companies increase and the size of nets become smaller, young fish are also caught, before maturing to breed.
  • Overfishing is therefore a common problem in all the fisheries of Southern Africa.
  • Of special note are the prawns of the Mozambique Channel and several fish species in the Agulhas fishing bank.

Inappropriate fishing methods

  • This includes small mesh nets and dynamite fishing for lobsters are major threat to the sustainability of the fishing industry in Southern Africa.
  • Mosquito nets are are often used and these have a particularly small mesh size
  • Fish diseases affect fish in most coastal areas.
  • These at times wipe out whole species.
  • Fish piracy from foreign trawls have over-fished the hake of the coastal of South Africa in recent years.
  • In Mozambique the majority of the fishing companies are foreign and operate on license, with little regard for sustainability.
  • Change of the habitat has at times affected fish spawning or breeding negatively in some areas.
  • In Namibia, dredging along the coastline for diamonds has destroyed the spawning grounds for lobsters.
  • In the Agulhas Bank, pollution and siltation have also altered the spawning or breeding environment for most fish species.

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