Ten research questions to support South Africa’s Inland Fisheries Policy

03 December 2020

South Africa is in the process of developing a National Freshwater (Inland) Wild Capture Fisheries Policy. A properly focused research strategy is essential to guide the policy development process, and thus a dedicated ‘Inland Fisheries’ workshop was convened by the South African Society for Aquatic Scientists in June 2018 to update and further develop a list of priority knowledge requirements for inland fisheries in the country. The main themes that emerged during the workshop were developed and contextualised as ten research questions. These were: (1) What is the exploitation potential of inland fisheries? (2) What are the health risks from consuming freshwater fishes? (3) Who currently uses inland fisheries and what are their harvests? (4) What can we learn from historical constraints to inland fisheries development? (5) How will governance of fisheries have to change in an evolving sectoral environment? (6) What are the options for fisheries enhancement? (7) What are the most appropriate fisheries technologies? (8) What value chains and employment opportunities are associated with inland fisheries? (9) What is the impact of water level fluctuations on fish production? (10) What are the impacts of pathogenic diseases on fish populations?