The study evaluated the ECOWAS fund accelerated artisanal fish production project (EFAAFPP) in Delta State. Primary data for the study were obtained through the use of interview schedule from 120 respondents of artisanal fisher folks (AFFs) while secondary data were obtained from the NACRDB office. Percentage, mean, t-test, chi-square statistics and factor analysis were used in analyzing data. Majority (65.8%) of the respondents were males and married (68.1%). Their mean age was 45.7 years.The study further revealed that fibre glass canoes; canoes, outboard engines, synthetic fishing nets, ice boxes, smoking kilns, floaters, sinkers, anchors, and fishing accessories like knives, lanterns, and hooks were distributed at a total value of N 97,635,200 to AFFs in Delta State by the NACRDB. Results of the findings showed that the respondents have adopted the following technologies disseminated by extension agents: synthetic fishing nets, smoking kilns, post harvest processing technique, and mending synthetic nets.The identified coping mechanisms used by AFFs during poor harvest and off-season included small scale artisanal fishing ( X    = 2.34); farming ( X = 2.26), harvesting of crustaceans ( X = 2.00) and harvesting of bivalves ( X = 2.00). The programme had contributed to the standard of living of AFFs in terms of an increase in their income, household materials possessed, and ease of accessibility to modern fishing inputs. The study further revealed that there was a significant association (Χ² = 68.5; P ≤ 0.05) between the different household materials possessed by AFFs and their participation in the EFAAFPP. A similar significant association (Χ² = 142.8; P ≤ 0.05) was observed between the level of artisanal fishing skills acquired by AFFs and their participation in the intervention. Also there was a significant association (Χ² = 123.4; P ≤ 0.05) between the ease in accessibility to modern fishing inputs by the AFFs and their participation in the programme. Finally a significant association (Χ² = 116.6; P ≤ 0.05) was observed between the participation of AFFs and their knowledge of searching for additional artisanal fishing technologies. The identified major constraints to the effective performance of the EFAAFPP were family problems, environmental problems and extraneous problems. It was recommended that a community based management approach involving all key stakeholders should be introduced in artisanal fishing communities in Delta State to regulate the exploitation of fisheries resources for continued sustainability of all participants who fish within these open waters.

1.1       Background  Information
Fishing contributes about 5% of the value of agricultural output. It accounts for 20-25% of per capital animal protein in-take, and employs about 8 million people. This makes it an important element in Nigeria’s bid to reduce poverty (Central Bank Nigeria, 2004). In many countries in the developing world, fish represents the single most vital source of animal protein that is affordable by the common man and where ever fish contributes to people’s diets, it provides essential micronutrients, minerals and fatty acids. Fish oils contains Omega-3-fatty acids which have been found to prevent a lot of diseases in humans and are also essential components of cell membrane in infants (Mercola, 2000).

The fishing sector’s contribution to foreign exchange earnings from fish, and shrimps amounted to US$ 50.0 million in 2003 but nonetheless; there was a deficit in the supply of fish and fishery products which was met by importation of US$ 403.5 million dollars worth of fish in the same year (Central Bank Nigeria, 2004).The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) reported that global import and export trade in fish and fish products was 61 billion US$ and 55 billion US$, respectively, in 2004, making fish an important commodity in international trade for both developed and developing countries globally (FAO, 2004). The FAO also categorized fishing types as artisanal fishing, aquaculture and industrial fishing (FAO, 2004). Artisanal fishing is small scale fishing and fishermen in this category operate small unmechanized crafts and simple hand operated gears which imply low capital investment on gears, crafts and processing facilities (Dada, 2004). Specifically artisanal fishing provides jobs for different groups of people all over the globe such as the fish processors, traders or marketers, net manufacturers, boat builders, etc. Besides, many are involved in fisheries extension activities (Reynolds, 2004).

An annual field survey by the Federal Department of Fisheries (FDF, 2007) reported that the bulk of fish supply in Nigeria comes from the artisanal fishing sub sector. Both coastal and inland fishing activities supplied the highest volume of fish with an average of 356,200 metric tons caught yearly. There are about 264,601 people on the average that are fully employed in artisanal fishing which makes it an important productive sector of the Nigeria economy. The Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources (FMANR) Department of Fisheries Statistical Data (Table 1) shows the estimated catches in the fishery sector from 2000-2007 and it can be seen that the artisanal fishing sub-sector (artisanal coastal brackish waters and artisanal inland rivers/lakes) accounted for highest catches in all the years when compared to fish farming, industrial fishing and distant water fishing sub-sectors (FDF, 2007).

Fisheries extension activities include gear and net size regulations, provision of information on sources of inputs like out-board engines, fibre glass boats, nylon nets, and improved smoking kilns for processing fish. Others include education on the migration patterns of some targeted pelagic fishes hunted by Artisanal Fisher Folks (AFFs), fish pond construction, fish feed formulation and composition, fisheries management practices and aquaculture for increase protein availability to AFFs. Extension information is also provided on livelihood enhancement activities in fishing enterprises, sustainability of fisheries resources, and other ancillary businesses or enterprises in fishing communities (Economic Community of West African States; 2006).....

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Item Type: Postgraduate Material  |  Attribute: 83 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
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