Monday, 22 September 2014

SPECIAL REPORT: How Darwinian theory emerged in Lake Victoria as Nile perch disappears

From The Citizen Daily, Dar es Salaam
By Lucas Liganga

Mwanza. It rose from the ashes to become the backbone of the Lake Zone economy, supporting 300,000 livelihoods directly and another 3 million indirectly, but the Nile perch is now on the brink of extinction, posing a serious threat to Lake Victoria, the world’s second largest fresh water lake.

The Nile perch, or Lates niloticus, as it is known scientifically, is a large freshwater fish introduced in Lake Victoria in 1954 by the British government to increase the fish population and can grow to a length of two metres and weigh 200 kilogrammes.

During the 1980s and early 1990s, before the introduction of fish processing plants in Lake Zone regions, Nile perch, or sangara as it is known among locals here, was virtually valueless and was favoured mainly by ordinary families, which could not afford more expensive fish like tilapia.

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