Nwafili SA* and Olumati Doris Chibanya
University of Port Harcourt, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Fisheries, P.M.B 5323 Choba, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria
*Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Silver catfish, Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus is of major economic importance in Nigeria. This species has been harvested for decades; however, the inability to spawn in captivity and the availability of fry is still a limiting factor in aquaculture of the species. Thus, it has been subjected to over-harvesting and posing a threat to the population in many water bodies. The aim of this research was to study the knowledge and practice of Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus fishery of the New Calabar River and discuss the implications for conservation. We carried out a survey of fishermen and the fishery characteristics of C. nigrodigitatus of the New Calabar River using questionnaires containing closed-ended items, direct observations, and interviews. The results indicate that the fishing of the species was dominated by males, as it was an all-male affair. Additionally, the average household size was 5.57±persons. The fishermen identified two species of Chrysichthys in the river. The drum trapping was the most practiced method of fishing, and the fishery was unregulated. The fishermen demonstrated good knowledge of the breeding characteristics of the species which was the reason the fish could be easily trapped in drums. The adoption of drum trapping is going to be essential in developing captive breeding of the species because it is non-invasive.