2021 Volume 41 Issue 1 Pages 1-22
Freshwater fisheries are an essential component of African fisheries, providing one-third of the total catch. This study focuses on the fishing of a small clupeid, Limnothrissa miodon, locally called kapenta, in Lake Kariba. Lake Kariba is shared by Zimbabwe and Zambia, and this study provides a chronology of the commercial kapenta fishing practices used in both countries. It examines how the current fishing methods have become popular among both white and black operators, from environmental and social perspectives. Unlike traditional and artisanal inland fisheries, which have a variety of fishing methods, only one fishing practice is employed in Lake Kariba. This is an artefact of the environmental characteristics of the man-made lake, political situations (settler colonialism and historical inequality between white and black populations), and socialist policies adopted by the Zimbabwean government. A modern fishing method invented by the white settlers has been widely accepted by the new black entrants to fishing and has spread throughout the lake.