COMPARATIVE ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF REGULATED AND UNREGULATED NATURAL LAKES FISHERIES IN PLATEAU STATE, NIGERIA

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Abstract:

This study examines the comparative economics of resource exploitation levels of government regulated (RENLAF) and unregulated (URENLAF) fisheries through the assessment of socioeconomic characteristics, determinants of participation in regulated fishing, determinants of site choice among the unregulated fishers, estimate level of compliance, costs, returns, profitability, technical efficiency and evaluate constraints of natural lakes artisanal fishers in Plateau state, with a view to examine the economic efficiency of effort allocation and exploitation of fisheries as renewable resource in the country. Daily fishing observations were made during catch assessment survey (CAS) for 4 weeks and recorded in a logbook. Data were collected through questionnaire from 20 fishers’ randomly selected each from Polmakat, Shimankar, Deben, Janta lakes and 30 other fishers purposively selected from regulated Pandam Lake. This gives a sample size of 110 respondents from a sample frame of 656. The analyses were carried out using descriptive statistics, logistic regression, multinomial logit, ordered probit, corrected least square and stochastic frontier production function models. The result indicated that both RENLAF and URENLAF fishers had similar socio-economic characteristics. The logit result suggested that heterogeneous fishing skills, catch-per-unit-of-effort and extension contact significantly influence decision to participate in regulated fishing. Furthermore, the study observed that age, family size, alternative source of income, extension contact and heterogeneous fishing skills significantly determine lake choices, with socio-economic, deterrence, social and legitimate variables were found to significantly influencing management regulatory compliance. Both fisheries were found to be profitable with net farm income (NFI) of N52, 194.46 per month and N38, 017.01 per month for RENLAF and URENLAF respectively, while, RENLAF was more profitable than URENLAF by 37%. Furthermore, it was found that RENLAF cost more than URENLAF by 46%. The mean technical efficiency of URENLAF and RENLAF fishers were 0.83 and 91.29 respectively, suggesting that RENLAF efficiency was higher than URENLAF by 8%. The URENLAF sites shows about 68% variation in output were as result of the presence of technical inefficiency effect, with some observable variables relating to socioeconomics characteristics such as extension contact, age and educational status positively and significantly affects technical efficiency. The major constraints to fishing at both fisheries were hippopotamus and high cost of fishing gears. Transformation for effective and sustainable fisheries exploitation will need the involvement of educated fishers, extension education, and setting more RENLAF sites through redefinition of property rights as well as gears limit regulation at RENLAF.

COMPARATIVE ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF REGULATED AND UNREGULATED NATURAL LAKES FISHERIES IN PLATEAU STATE, NIGERIA

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