Your selection in the media library
The waters off the coast of Senegal have been stripped of their false cods, also known as "thiof" or groupers. How is it possible that this country's iconic fish is nearly extinct? A French-Senegalese team recently demonstrated that the collapse of stocks is due to the boom in the small-scale fishery sector – generally viewed as a sustainable alternative to industrial fisheries. Over 30 years, the number of pirogues has quadrupled. Technological progress continuously improves the fishing power of the fleet. In order to reduce pressure on the resource, researchers recommend the implementation of a management system to control small-scale fisheries and regulate exportation, which pushes up prices per kilo and makes thiof a very profitable commodity, despite the scarcity of the fish.
In 2005, there were more than 5,000 marine protected areas across the globe. These reserves assist in preserving biodiversity. And yet, the impact on fishing has not yet been demonstrated. The Amphore( 1) programme, coordinated by the IRD and involving French and West African laboratories, provides a detailed economic and biological survey. Four reserves of varying size and age were studied in closer detail, including two in West Africa: one in Senegal, the other in Mauritania. A ban on fishing operations within protected areas only gives rise to a small increase in the total fish biomass, although there is an improvement in population diversity. The observations and models carried out by researchers show that halieutic resources are greater outside of protected areas, in zones that can be exploited by fishermen. The larger the area of the reserve, the more positive the effect. However, the creation of vast protected areas can cause problems, particularly in heavily anthropized areas, and requires participatory management.
Every year, Sub-Saharan Africa is the scene of a meningitis epidemic which hits tens of thousands of people. The geographical zone stretching from Senegal to Ethiopia is known as the “meningitis belt”. For many years the region has been under the scrutiny of scientists aiming to unravel the ...