Year of commencement and ending: 2014-201
Funder of the project: NEPAD through the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries Development (MLFD)
Field surveys were conducted at three study zones, namely, Tanga, Mafia and Mtwara. Research is being undertaken every month or once in two months since August 2014 through collection and analysis of various data including biometrics and fishing effort. Among other findings, the average catch per unit effort was 3 KgFisher-1Day-1 with high catch in Mafia and low in Mtwara. Most of the individuals caught in Mafia were larger specimen weighing above the minimal allowable weight (500 gram), while most individuals in Mtwara were under the minimum allowed size (weight). This could potentially indicate there is overfishing of juvenile octopus in Mtwara or the fishing area in Mtwara could be a recruiting sites. Catch landings were at the pick between September and November. The project ended in July 2015 and the final report is under preparation. GIS data were not captured during the survey as the money received from the client was not enough to collect these data. This was stated in our inception report. It was agreed that the Client will ask for the additional funds from the donor for this activity.
Expected Outputs include spatial maps showing octopus catch and effort by main fishing areas and seasons; Main ecological elements (spatially defined) relative to octopus catch and effort; Risk matrix of impact of octopus fishery on the main ecological elements (by area and season).
Capacity building and Dissemination
Training on data collection and recording has been provided to District Fisheries Offices (DFOs) and two Beach Management Units (BMUs) from the study areas, namely, Tanga, Mafia and Mtwara. Some research equipment and materials have been purchased for TAFIRI including weighing scales, measuring boards etc.
The preliminary results of the project were presented at the Octopus Task Force meeting organized by the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries Development (MLFD) in June 2015. Data analysis is on-going and three manuscripts are expected to be written and submitted for publication considerations in different international journals. The project findings will be presented during the stakeholder workshop which will be organized by the Client immediately after receiving the project final report.