Nom du corpus

Corpus Systématique Animale

Titre du document

The Lake Victoria environment: Its fisheries and wetlands — a review

Lien vers le document
Springer (journals)
Langue(s) du document
Type de document
Mots-clés d'auteur
  • Ecological changes
  • fisheries
  • habitat degradation
  • human impact
  • Lake Victoria
  • Oreochromis niloticus
  • species stockings
  • water hyacinth
  • wetlands
Nom du fichier dans la ressource
  • John S. Balirwa
  • Freshwater Fisheries Research Institute (FIRI), P.O. Box 343, Jinja, Uganda

Recent ecological changes in the Lake Victoria ecosystem have been attributed to the effects of species stockings and, in particular, from predation pressure by the Nile perch. Evidence for the decline of haplochromines due to predation by the Nile perch, while overwhelming, does not necessarily account for these gross ecological changes. Ecological theory predicts that natural fluctuation would occur in a fisheries where predator and prey species could alternate in abundance. The absence of a substantial recovery of the endemic species within cyclical abundance patterns in Lake Victoria (even though they could be delayed), particularly in the pelagic and profundal zones, points to other causal factors. Ecological changes have occurred in Lake Victoria since the turn of the century when modern fishing methods and techniques were introduced. As the human population increased and the catchment became more exposed to diverse socio-economic activities, further pressure on the ecological functioning of the lake was compounded by exotic species stockings. Thus, declining fisheries, wetland degradation and eutrophication are part of gross environmental changes that are likely to become more manifest with the increasing impact of the water hyacinth. It therefore seems appropriate to consider the ecological changes at both temporal and spatial scales and to re-examine some of the paradigms for ecological change. Although cataclysmic impacts may have occurred between the 1960's and the early 1980's, the basic cause of ecological changes, at least in the inshore zone, appears to result from human activities partly associated with a degradation of the riparian wetlands that exposes the aquatic ecosystem to catchment activities. Overexploitation and a reduction in habitat quality and quantity in this zone could be major factors in the ecological transformations. However, the importance of the littoral zone and the ecological impact of the Nile tilapia, another stocked species, are hardly known. An additional hypothesis is therefore put forward to determine whether or not wetland vegetation types in Lake Victoria are important fish habitats. This hypothesis allows for testing several interrelated sub-hypotheses about the relationships between wetland vegetation and the ecology of Nile tilapia. The water hyacinth, a recent feature of the shoreline and an additional strain to the already endangered buffer zone, may have to be regarded as a dynamic, but permanent, part of most of the littoral zone.

Catégories Science-Metrix
  • 1 - natural sciences
  • 2 - biology
  • 3 - ecology
Catégories INIST
  • 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines
  • 2 - sciences biologiques et medicales
  • 3 - sciences biologiques fondamentales et appliquees. psychologie
Catégories Scopus
  • 1 - Physical Sciences ; 2 - Environmental Science ; 3 - Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Aquatic Science
  • 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
Catégories WoS
  • 1 - science ; 2 - water resources
  • 1 - science ; 2 - environmental sciences
Identifiant ISTEX

Wetlands Ecology and Management

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