My previous article talks about three factors; they are as follows;.
- The driving factors behind livelihood choices of fisher communities; what drives them to make livelihood choices.
- How market chain analysis tool helps identify alternative livelihood options within a fisheries sub-sector itself. In other words, how market chain analysis tool facilitate horizontal diversification of livelihoods in a fisheries sub-sector.
This time, I want you to draw your attention on another case-study. This case-study will show us how market chain analysis tool helps us facilitate vertical diversification of livelihoods in a fisheries sub-sector. [As mentioned in the previous blog post, this case study is also from the project on “Community Based Fisheries Co-governance”].
To facilitate a solution for this issue, the project team began to analyze the Panama coastal fishery sub-sector in detail. To do that, the team had participatory market chain analysis workshops with coastal fishers. This exercise showed that all of the coastal fishers did not get into lagoon fishing during off-season. More than half of them (220) went migrant fishing. Migrant fishing means going to other areas for fishing. Mostly, these fishers migrated to a place called Okanda, where they went for lobster fishing. This area was highly populated with rocks, giving an enabling environment for a thriving lobster production. Lobster fishing coincided with the off-season of coastal fishery in Panama. Half of the rest of the fishers (70) went in inland fishing mainly in reservoirs; Panama reservoir was one of them. The problem of encroachment in Panama lagoon rested with only a number of 66 coastal fishers. The analysis further revealed that these fishers were excluded from lobster and reservoir fishery.
However, the PMCA workshops revealed that there was high demand for marine fish during the off-season. The marine fish were brought from other areas of eastern and southern provinces to Panama village and adjoining villages. What was brought did not meet the requirement (demand). Marine fish was from deep sea fishing, which coincides with off-season of coastal fishery. Deep sea fishing is carried out beyond the first 12 nautical miles from the coast. The discussion came to a point where these fishers expressed their desire to engage in deep sea fishing, provided they were trained on how to do that. The training had to be provided in terms of deep sea fishing technics, navigation skills, building fishing vessels etc. The fisher explained that they did not have access to learn about deep sea fishing mainly due to protracted war.
Given this requirement, the project linked this group of fishers with National Institute of Nautical Engineering (NIFNE) for a training on deep sea fishing. This was a practical training on deep sea fishing. This training gave them hands on experience on both day and multi day deep sea fishing. They leant that they could go for day deep sea fishing with some simple modifications to their fishing vessels in stead of huge investments on multi day fishing vessels initially.
After this training, there was an end to lagoon encroachment resulting in an end to sever conflict between sea and lagoon fishers in Panama. Because, the encroachers began making their way towards deep sea fishing during off-season of coastal fishery.
This blog article has direct link to the paper “Developing non fishing livelihoods for small scale coastal communities”. One may wonder what it means “alternative livelihoods” for small scale fisher communities, what sort of lessons that one can get, please find the link to the full paper;- http://www.slideshare.net/CrishErwin/developing-nonfishing-livelihoods-for-small-scale-coastal-fisher-communities-11393813