Aquat. Living Resour.
Volume 32, 2019
|Number of page(s)||14|
|Published online||24 May 2019|
Sea cucumber fishing pattern and the socio-economic characteristics of fisher communities in Sri Lanka
Department of Zoology, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Gangodawila, Nugegoda, Sri Lanka
2 Inland Aquatic Resources and Aquaculture Division, National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), Crow Island, Colombo 15, Sri Lanka
3 Department of Agricultural Economics and Business Management, University of Peradeniya, Peradeniya, Sri Lanka
* Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Handling Editor: Sean Pascoe
Accepted: 28 March 2019
Sea cucumber fishing pattern and the social and economic characteristics of sea cucumber fisher communities in the north, north-west and north-east regions of Sri Lanka were assessed using the data collected from November 2015 to January 2017. A total of 9 sea cucumber species is landed in these areas using three fishing methods; diving (SCUBA and breath-hold), gleaning and surrounding nets. SCUBA diving is the dominant fishing method and SCUBA divers do both day and night fishing reporting the highest catch rates (CPUE ± SD in numbers/person/day) than the other fishers (p < 0.05; ANOVA). Gleaning is entirely carried out by fisherwomen in the northern region whereas 28 surrounding nets are used targeting low-value Stichopus naso. CPUE found to be varied with respect to species, region and fishing method (p < 0.05; ANOVA). Bohadschia vitiensis made the highest percentage contribution (61.3%) to the total sea cucumber landings during the study period. Among all fishers, SCUBA divers reported the highest average net monthly income. Men play a dominant role in sea cucumber fishing (98%), processing (99%) and marketing (100%). Fishermen in the age range of 25–67 yr, having only primary education mainly involved in the sea cucumber industry. The sea cucumber value chain consists of fishers (∼2000), middlemen (12), processors (16) and exporters (7). A significant increase in overall price development from fishers to the exporters was reported for all 9 species (p < 0.05; ANOVA). Fishers received a proportionally higher share of the end-market price mainly for low-value Bohadschia spp. Although fishers receive disproportionately low returns compared to other value chain players, 47.8% of fishers showed high satisfaction towards the prices they received from buyers. However, 83.6% of fishers are not satisfied with existing management measures. Apart from strengthening the existing management measures, this information is important to update the regional and global sea cucumber statistics.
Key words: Price markup / value chain / satisfaction / sea cucumbers / Sri Lanka
© EDP Sciences 2019
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