This project tested, revised and widely promoted a methodology for participatory fisheries stock assessment (ParFish), which was developed under previous projects. ParFish has been developed as a resource-efficient stock assessment technique that does not require long-term time series data, can be applied with limited resources to provide a starting point for management decisions. The process involves resource users and other stakeholders in setting management objectives, data collection and management planning. The methodology and approach for fisheries stock assessment and management in developing countries contributes to poverty reduction through the improved and sustainable management of small scale fisheries on which the poor are dependent and through the subsequent benefits expected for associated fishery dependent livelihoods.
This project carried out field testing through the following three case studies:
- Mud crab fishery (Scylla serrata) in the Coringa mangroves, Andhra Pradesh, India. Interviews and data collection were carried out in collaboration with the Department of Fisheries and the State Institute for Fishing Technology. A workshop to discuss the results was held that brought together fishers, managers, scientists, politicians and NGOs.
- Coral reef fishery in Diani, Kenya in collaboration with CORDIO and the Department of Fisheries;
- Inshore net fishery in Gabon in collaboration with the Wildlife Conservation Society.
A previous project developed the approach, techniques and guidelines with the fishers from Mkunguni, Dimbani and Mtende in Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Field testing of the methodology with collaborating institutions increased capacity and provided lessons learned In order to revise the Toolkit. A training workshop held in India for 14 participants promoted ParFish through increasing capacity in participating institutions. Subsequently, several participants have initiated ParFish case studies in their institutions. Communications and promotion was central to the project, and wide dissemination of communication materials included a synthesis product through FMSP 05/09.
The Toolkit was sent out in hard copy to 70 people from 52 institutions in 28 countries. So far, 7 were known to be attempting implementation of ParFish independently.