|Date||13 Jul 2011|
The Labeobarbus spp. flock are the only extant cyprinid species flock in the world. There are 17 species of the genus that are closely related to one another than they are to other species of the genus outside of the Lake Tana sub-basin. Similar cyprinid species flock in Lake Lanao, Philippines, have vanished due to anthropogenic factors. Labeobarbus spp.of Lake Tana are not only scientifically unique and important but also economically very important to the community living around the lake, although the catch is decreasing from time to time. From previous studies it is known that some of the species migrate to feeder rivers of Lake Tana every year for breeding purposes. This makes them vulnerable to mass fishing by fishers and farmers by blocking their migratory routes. Some of the species are suspected to either migrate to other unexplored rivers or breed within the lake itself. One of the unexplored rivers was Arno-Garno River which has recently been studied using the grant from Rufford Foundation. This project focuses on the last major river, Gilgel Abay River, that was not so far thoroughly studied.
It is known that Lake Tana and feeder rivers are exposed to various forms of environmental degradation including overexploitation of the fish resources, encroachment on the wetlands and shores of the lake, development activities such as construction of dams and irrigation projects as well as effluents from farm lands. There is also a problem of lack of awareness on the part of fishers, farmers, development workers and decision makers. Therefore, the project also aims at creating awareness among stakeholders starting from farmers and fishers in the area.
Read about Abebe's previous work with the Labeobarbus spp. flock http://www.ruffordsmallgrants.org/rsg/projects/abede_getahun or for more information contact: