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Bahrain's Fish Stocks Decline by 90 Percent, Government Study

2018-10-29 - 1:27 p

Bahrain Mirror: A study conducted by experts for the Fisheries Management Department of the Ministry of Works, Municipalities and Urban Planning said that local fish stocks in Bahrain have fallen sharply by about 90 percent and that the remaining stock is about 10 percent, which is prone to decline sharply.

The study attributed the reasons for the sharp decline in marine resources over the past few years to many factors, the most important of which is that the expatriate fishermen carry out damaging practices that would harm the marine environment, such as trawling as well as the use of other harmful fishing methods such as fishing with nylon nets.

The study also pointed out that the total number of licenses for fishing and shrimp fishing reached 1,700, by which more than 6,400 fishermen practice fishing, which is a number that exceeds the capacity level, considering the remaining quantities of fish that constitute the current fish stock. This stock will not in the near future be able to meet the growing demand for fish of various kinds, which will prevent in the near term the availability of these fish in markets.

The study highlighted that Bahrain, which has 80 species of fish, recorded a sharp decline in 76 species, meaning that only four of the 80 species remain within safe limits.

The study warned that if the damage to the reefs and seamounts continues, the four species that are abundant will also be threatened by a sharp decline and that imported fish will be the substitute for fresh local fish.

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