It might not be clear why a fish pond project should take root in a region surrounding the great Lake Victoria. After all, as the second largest freshwater lake in the world, it should be able to support the fish and the people that depend on its resources.
But the fact that fish farming is fast expanding here highlights a worrying trend – that the fish population in Lake Victoria has been in steady decline and the quality of what is being caught has been going down too, jeopardising the livelihoods of millions.
Overfishing, pollution and the invasive water hyacinth plant, among other factors, are to blame for the decline. The situation is so bad that cheap tilapia imports from China are now sold in the lake city of Kisumu, edging out local fishmongers.
The fishermen are finding it difficult to compete. These fish, from thousands of miles away, are cheaper than those caught just down the road in the lake. Read more…