Influence of beach management units' intervention measures on supply of fish at fish-landing beaches in Kisumu County, Kenya
Ogolla, Aggrey O
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Fisheries resources, worldwide have contributed immensely to the socioeconomic, health and environmental sustainability of mankind. A declining trend has been reported in natural water bodies which necessitated the introduction of a number of Code of Conducts for protecting and exploiting the resources. These standards and conducts have been viewed as the primary road towards sustainable fishery, however the implementation of these instruments require a lot of financial and organizational skills which is inadequate in developing countries. Therefore alternative approaches have been developed for small scale fish producing countries to enable them meet national and international requirements. The researcher surveyed fisheries management in global, continental, regional, national and local perspectives. One of the approaches is public participation by way of Beach Management Unit as institutions. As a natural resource, fisheries is has myriad challenges affecting the survival of the sector. In view of this the Kenya government through partnership arrangement with stakeholders established Beach Management Units to initiate intervention measures that would influence supply of fish. The purpose of this study was to assess the influence of Beach Management Units' interventions measures on supply of fish at beaches in Kisumu County. This study was guided by the following objectives: to examine the extent to which fishers licensing control influenced supply of fish; to establish how fishing rules and regulations influenced supply of fish; to assess the extent to which infrastructure development influenced supply of fish and to establish the extent to which financing strategy formulated influenced supply of fish. The research design used was descriptive survey which was adopted to explain the relationship between the independent and the dependent variables. The targeted population comprised 4129 fish workers operating at the 32 fish landing beaches in the county. The sample size used in the study was 352. Purposive sampling technique was applied to select the officials of the Beach Management Units officials and Fisheries Officers. The study area (Kisumu County) was divided into 3 clusters, Kisumu East, Kisumu West and Nyando districts using saturated or inclusive sampling technique. The instruments used for collection of primary quantitative data were open and close questionnaires. The secondary data were sourced from existing reports and literature. The research instruments used in the study were tested for reliability and validity through pilot testing. Interview schedules and document analysis guide were important aids used during data collection. The data collected was analyzed using Statistical Program for Social Sciences and collection of major themes as qualitative applications. The study established that Beach Management Units intervention measures reduced the amount of fish supplied at the beaches in the county. The capacities of the Beach Management Units were inadequate to manage the existing infrastructure so could not influence the fish supply. Although most fishers belonging to BMUs were members of financial institutions, they did not access credit facilities. So their business remained low and therefore the interventions did not influence fish supply. It was recommended that fish farming projects be enhanced in the area, the Beach Management Units be empowered with skills and finances, government should establish funds to develop fisheries infrastructure and institute reforms to streamline fisheries management. For further research it was suggested the similar study be done in counties with fish landing beaches for comparison and a study be done to investigate the influence of attitude of fishers on loans and other credit facilities.