Full Length Research Paper

Socioeconomics and profitability analysis of artisanal fisheries in Mahin Lagoon, Ondo State, Nigeria

Bolarinwa J. B.*, E. A. Fasakin and O. A. Fagbenro

Abstract

The study of the socioeconomic status of  the fisher folks and profitability analysis of artisanal fisheries in Mahin lagoon, Ondo State, Nigeria conducted  for 18 months (June, 2011 - December, 2012) showed that the artisanal fisheries was male-dominated (81.4%). Majority of the fisher folks were married. Gill net fishing was mainly practised (54%), followed by cast netting (23%). Over 70% of the artisans used paddled canoes as against 26% used motorised boats. Access to credit, extension services and improved fishing inputs were very low at 7, 5 and 7% respectively. Most fisher folks showed poor recording habit. About 92% of the fisher folks did not keep records of transactions and catches despite the relatively high level of literacy (60% of  them had minimum of  secondary education). Majority complied to the use of 50.8mm mesh size showing responsible fisheries activities. Dearth of infrastructural facilities like health centres, training centres, post- harvest storage facilities, electricity and water supply was observed in most of the fishing communities. The two major challenges facing them were high incidence of water hyacinth (Eichornia crassipes) and oil spillage. This calls for governmental intervention in the area of training and provision of infrastructures that would increase the living standard of the artisanal fisher folks. Financial analysis showed the use of paddled canoes by 74% of the fisher folks was less profitable than use of motorised canoes by 26% of the fisher folks. Annual Gross Revenue was N 546,000.00 for paddle canoe owners as against N 910,000.00 for those using motorised boats. Earnings before Tax for fishing with paddle canoes and motorised canoes were N 186,000 and N 370,000.00 respectively. Return on Sales (ROS) for paddled and motorised canoe users were 31% and 36% respectively. Return on Investment (ROI) was 49% for paddled canoe fishing and 93.1% for motorised boat fishing and while the Benefit-Cost ratio was 1.52: 1 for paddled canoe fishing as against 1.69: 1for motorised canoe fishing. The diverse challenges facing the fisher folks call for provision of a conducive enabling environment by the government. There is a need for training and sensitization of Mahin fisher folks. Fisheries policy makers should also adopt a ‘Bottom-up approach’ to accommodate the specific needs of the artisanal fisher folks who were the major stakeholders.

Key words: Fisher folks, socioeconomics, infrastructure, benefit-cost analysis, artisanal, lagoon..

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