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1.1                  BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

In recent years there has been a growing concern that the fisheries in most water bodies in Nigeria a have been increasingly over exploited leading  to reduction in socio- economic benefits far local communities and they regional economy in general.  It has been estimated that most of the world’s major inland fisheries are now at their maximum level  of exploitation (FAO1995) for example before now the formal East central state now consist of (Anambra Imo Enugu and Abuja) were know for their richness in terms of natural resources particularly in the area  of  fish production. For instance during 1980’s about 40% of the total fish supplied in Nigeria were produced form these region.  But as time goes on   there become a drastic decline in fish production from these region.

This became a matter of specially concern to the people of these region. However it is on record that recently specifically in March 2005 that president Obasanjo in his official visit to Delta State was asked why the present government is hesitating in signing into law a bill that would pave way for the draining of River Niger in the region in order to allow for confluence of Rivers so as to increased fish spawning.  His answer was” there are more it takes to attaining  full production in fisheries production than only to draining Rivers”

Meanwhile, combinations of factors were though to be responsible. Firstly environmental changes caused by drought and dam construction has resulted on lower fish production.  Secondly an intensification of fishing effort has been brought about increased  communalization the introduction of modern  gears restriction (such as gears net mesh net etc) which are used in capturing  fish. Furthermore welcome and  Barthey discovered that catches  from in-land fisheries are Indic line state due to deteriorating quality of aquatic environment and  poor management. Similarly  Nigeria  and Biosphere (an association responsible for  the studying of intercalation ship between man and living organism) in 1990 organized an educative seminar on Nigerian water bodies which in broad sense includes flood plain lake reservoir and swamp

Despite all these protective effort capture fisheries remains highly vulnerable to over exploitation and degradation.  It follows therefore that if fisheries enhancement are to be successful the problems of overexploitations and  degradation must be address in parallel from  the out-set. In response to the need for better understanding of in-land fisheries management and to investigate the possibilities for designing a more effective approach to fisheries management the researcher takes Osimiri Dudu flood pond in Anambra State as a case study.  A particular focus of the project is to investigate whether traditional management system which were perceive to be successful and well adopted to local condition could   be use as a basis for community based approach to fisheries management in the  future in in-land fisheries management.


There have been a concerted effort by Anambra State River basin authority (ASEBA) and some organized private sector individuals to improve productivity of fish in here various water bodies recently for instance federal government and state government recently conducted a research work which was assisted by food and agriculture organizaiton (FAO) to find out the rate at which fishes propagate in in-land water bodies in Nigeria  Similarly there  have been also series of seminars and work-shop geared towards educating fishermen for the need for the conservation of Nigerian water bodies.

Inspite of all these effort most water bodies in Nigeria are still in declining trend.   This left the researcher with no other option than only to ponder: what really are the cause of the low productivity? Is it possible that an accurate assessment of the status of these in in-land  fisheries have not been  conducted? Or could it be a lack of detailed information to the stake- holders? Or is the management techniques in use are not suitable? These are what the researcher want to find out in this research work and suggest a possible solutions to the problems.

The challenge to this research work is to therefore to find some management system that would best support fisheries management in the  state in finding and implanting its approach by specifying  institutional arrangement that would prevent degradation and over exploitation occurring in the first place rather than trying to find way to repair the damages ones it has occurred. Such strategy make clear economic sense.  It is also ecologically desirable in line with precautionary principle in that there is no guarantee that renewable natural resources   degradation is reversible. 


From all that has been written it is the objective of this study:

  1. To find out why productivity in most in-land water bodies in Nigeria especially that of Osimiri Dude is very low
  2. To find a means of minimizing over- exploitation in Nigeria water  bodies
  3. To determine the  cause of the  deteriorating quality of aquatic environment in Nigeria.
  4. To degraded status of our water bodies.


As a guide to finding solution to the research problem the research posed the following research questions.

  1. What are the effect of using toxic substance in fishing activities?
  2. Does environment changes have any impact on in-land  fisheries management?
  3. What type of management system does local fishermen proffered most?
  4. How does drought and dam construction effect  fish stocking?
  5. What time of the year does over concentration of fishermen occurs in water bodies?
  6. Is there any policy or programme regulating fishing activities?
  7. Why does over-exploitation occur in Nigerian fishery industries?


The following hypothesis forms the frame work for carrying out the study.

H0: Using toxic substance during fishing does not effect fish propagation

H1: Using toxic substance during fishing  effect fish propagation

H0: Traditional management of system is not the best and general acceptable

management system in local community in fisheries management 

H1: Traditional management of system is  the best and general acceptable

management system in local community in fisheries management 


It should be recognized that the fundamental issue as regards to fisheries management in  most cases is the allocation of scarce (natural) resource to alternate ends. For example in the case of water bodies which contains major in-land fisheries as population pressure and other stress increase the natural resources become increasingly scare and become valuable.  However because in many cases invitational management do not exist (or inadequate ) for the allocation of resource free and open access to increasingly valuable resources result inevitably in the degradation.

As a result of this, this study become very important especially today that all hands are on deck to develop Nigerian economy. this study will be of immense benefit to both public sector organization and organized private sector in the fishery industries in addition the study will determine the factor limiting fish production in this sector of economy (fishing industries).  It is expected that the findings will help to rediscover the past abundant fish production in in-land water bodies in Nigeria.    


The scope of this study is very wide if  it has to be carried out in all inland fisheries resource of Nigeria.  The study is limited based on the fact that there is no tome and material resources to see to the whole nation


Considering the time factor financial constraints, material resources at the researcher disposal and the fast approaching higher national diploma examination of the researcher the researcher therefore limit his study to Osimiri Dude flood pond in Anambra State. This is to enable him finish on time.  Though he findings may not be valid for the whole in-land water bodies in the country.  But on the whole what happens in water bodies in Anambra State can said to apply to other water bodies in the country.


Charles A.T. (1994) Fisheries Socio- Economic in the Development World

Canada: Halifax Publication Ltd

Christie W.J. (1993) Developing the Concept of Sustainable Fish Canada:

 Picton Ontario P 99109

Dunn E. (1996) Fisheries and the Development of Sustainability Indicator

United Kingdom Royal Society for the Protection of Birds P.1319 

FAO, “Report of the  Consultation of Sustainable Development in the

 Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries Sectors” Project Work April 28 1992

Folke C. and Kaulsky N “Aquaculture With its Environment” Prospect for

Sustainability Vol. 18,No 1,1992,p.234-243  

Garcia S.M; (1994) The Precautionary Principle in Capture Fisheries

Management Rome Department of F.A.O Rome Italy Page 99-125

Hammer M. (1991) Ecosystem Support to Fisheries and Fish Trade Sweden

Department of Ecosystem/ Ecology Stockholm.