Fish poaching on the rise

Fish poaching is prevalent in all major dams around Zimbabwe - Kariba, Chivero, Manyame, Mutirikwi and Mazvikadei.

“I have a family to feed and jobs are scarce. This is the only way to survive,” said one poacher.

Although there is no overall policy document for fisheries per se, the main governing strategy aims at sustainable utilization of the fishery resource while ensuring that there is no loss of biological diversity.

The general thrust is to increase production from both capture fisheries and aquaculture in order to strengthen the rural economy, create employment and enhance household food security.

“Fish poachers are on the increase and what is worrying is that some of them poison the water so that all the marine life is affected,” said an official from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.

Caroline Washaya-Moyo, the Parks and Wildlife spokesperson, said they were facing a number of challenges in their quest to police the large water bodies, chief among them the shortage of speed boats and the cost of 2,000 l of fuel a month to cover an areas of more than 1,000 square km.

According to the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organisation, fishing is central to the livelihood of more than 200 million people globally, especially in the developing world.

But fish stocks globally are in jeopardy and under increasing pressure from over-fishing and environmental degradation.

Post published in: Environment

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