An assessment of illegal fishing in Gonarezhou National Park, Zimbabwe

E. Gandiwa, P. Zisadza-Gandiwa, M. Mutandwa, S. Sandram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Illegal fishing is a worldwide problem. In this study we present the first assessment of illegal fishing in Gonarezhou National Park (GNP), Zimbabwe. Information on illegal fishing was gathered from a total of 39 illegal fishers who were arrested within GNP between February and October 2011. Data was collected using semi-structured questionnaires that were administered through interviews. Our results showed that most of the illegal fishing was undertaken by women (n = 32, 82%). Most of the illegal fishers were middle-aged, less educated, and came from poor families characterised by a high number of dependents. Illegal fishing was largely carried out using fishing nets with harvested fish being sold and also being consumed at household level. Despite the perceived increase in law enforcement in GNP, respondents reported that illegal fishing had also increased due to rising poverty in communities adjacent to the park. Increasing conservation awareness, law enforcement and establishing irrigation projects would help in further reducing illegal fishing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-37
JournalE3 Journal of Environmental Research and Management
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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