Saturday, June 15, 2024

Senegal: The Mangrove – an Essential Ecosystem for the Regeneration of Fishery Resources

Around 250 artisanal fishermen, fishmongers and women processors from Joal, Mbour, Ngaparou, Saly, Guéréo, Popenguine and Cayar have joined forces to safeguard their livelihoods.

Working together with the Association for the Integrated Management of Natural Resources and the Environment (AGIRE) and the Senegalese Artisanal Fishing Stakeholders’ Platform (PAPAS), they spent four hours reforesting three hectares of mangrove in Joal. The equivalent of four football pitches!

Despite unstable weather conditions marked by high tides and rough seas, these brave men and women were determined to restore the mangroves. This is an important initiative, not only to rehabilitate and preserve these precious coastal ecosystems, but above all to help restore fish stocks, most of which are being over-exploited. For them, it was essential to commemorate World Oceans Day with concrete, beneficial actions for their future and that of their children.

According to Abdou Karim SALL, President of the Senegalese Artisanal Fishing Stakeholders’ Platform (PAPAS), the importance of mangroves in preserving fish stocks is well established. For example, it supports the reproduction of more than 35 species of fish. Mangroves also provide a large proportion of the food for small pelagic fish, a resource that plays a major role in national, sub-regional and even African food security. In fact, small pelagics make up a large part of the diet of the Senegalese and African populations. Fish caught in Senegal can be found on the markets of many African countries (Mali, Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gabon, DRC, etc.).