Alarm as fishing crafts and cages in Lake Victoria rises
SEE ALSO :Russia gives Sh700m for weed fightOn overall, the crew used 23,427 gill nets-a 14 per cent increase. Up to 3,330,994 long line hooks were used, as were handline hooks (2,273), beach seines (1,077), boat seines (1,050), small seines (11,673) monofilament nets (27,584), cast nets (79) and traps (951). Apart from handline hooks whose numbers dropped this year, there was a general increase in all the other fishing gear comparing to 2016. The survey found that there were 3,696 fish cages in the lake, spread in Kisumu, Siaya, Migori, Homa Bay and Busia counties. In Siaya, for instance, the number of fish cages has risen to 2,989 in the past three years followed by Homa Bay which has 479 fish cages.
SEE ALSO :Homa Bay gets Coast guard postBusia County has 120 cages followed by Kisumu (85) and Migori (23). According to the fisheries department, the figures point out the need to regulate fishing activities in the lake. "We are planning to sensitise fish cage investors so that they can do it in a sustainable manner that will allow the lake to regenerate," said Dr Okoth. However, beach managers complained that little is being done to restock the lake with fingerlings. "We want the lake restocked to increase fish population that is now threatened by over-fishing," said National Beach Management Unit chairman Tom Guda.
SEE ALSO :NEMA shuts abattoir over pollutionThe Lake Victoria Fisheries Frame Survey 2019 was funded by the government through the State Department of Fisheries, Aquaculture and the Blue Economy According to Fisheries Principal Secretary Japheth Ntiba, the ministry is focusing more on sustainable fishing practices. This includes mapping out areas for fish cages and sensitising communities and investors to ensure that fish stocks are not harvested faster than they can reproduce.
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