PRESENT STATUS, PROSPECTS AND CONSERVATION OF HILSA, Tenualosa ilisha (CLUPEIFORMES: CLUPEIDAE) FISHERY IN BANGLADESH
UTTAR PRADESH JOURNAL OF ZOOLOGY, Volume 43, Issue 21,
Belonging to the family Clupeidae, hilsa shad Tenualosa ilisha (Hamilton, 1822) is an important fish species in the South and Southeast Asia, especially in Bangladesh. Due to its unique nature, the fish has gained national and international demands for its nutritional values, taste qualities, special aroma and high delicacy, and provides livelihoods to the millions of fishers directly or indirectly along the coastal and riverine stretches in its range of natural distribution. It is considered as the national and most important commercial fish species of Bangladesh and contributes significantly to the national economy. In this study, an attempt is made in evaluating the data currently available on hilsa to determine the impact of the current management approaches and improvement strategies of this important fishery. Hilsa is found primarily in marine and estuarine environments, but it has been declining gradually over the last 30 years, reaching a low point in 1991-1992 and continuing until 2002-2003. Recognizing the declining trend of hilsa, the government took action to increase production by implementing regulations on jatka (juvenile) catch and restrictions on brood hilsa catch during the breeding season. As a result, total hilsa catch increased from 2.55 million MT (metric ton) in 2003-04 to 3.94 million MT in 2015-2016. Under the Protection and Conservation of Fish Act of 1950, Hilsa production peaked in 2016-2017, with a total of 4.96 lakh metric tons. Hilsa management techniques contribute 12.9% of all fish produced, while in Bangladesh, the rate of increase in hilsa production is 25.69%. The annual increase of total hilsa production climbed from 3.5% to 9.0% after 2015 as a result of the government's general management activities, payments for ecosystem service (PES) and the environmental management strategies, resulting in annual total hilsa production of 5.50 lakh MT in 2019–2020. A number of recommendations for effective management of the hilsa fisheries that might be implemented into the national policy are elicited in order to improve the situation because the current hilsa management plan has an impact on the conservation of this important fishery to a greater extent in commensurate with its national and international demands.
- Hilsa fishery
- management strategies
- conservation measures
- economic incentives
How to Cite
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