Fish is a source of healthy food for humanity at large. Historically, Fishing has been a major source of livelihood for coastal and inland fishing communities. The Fisheries sector in Tamil Nadu plays a crucial role in the overall economic development of the State. The rich fish biodiversity of the State offers good scope for fisheries development. The Fisheries sector, which started only as a subsistence livelihood activity during the early plan period is now emerging as a vital sector, contributing to employment generation, food security and foreign exchange earnings significantly.  

Estuarine Ecosystems

There are three important riverine ecosystems,which confluence with Arabian Sea in Kanniyakumari

·         Thengapattinam estuary, formed by the confluence of river Tampirabarani in between Thengapattinam and Eraiummanthurai.

·         Valliyar estuary formed by the river Valloiyar near Kadiapattinam.

·         Manakudy estuary formed by the confluence of river Pazhayar in between East and West Manakudy villages.

Apart from these are two minor estuaries also: they are

·Pambar estuary near Colachel and

·Pantri estuary near Rajakkamangalam.

These are formed by the drainage canal excess waste during monsoon and the water drained from the irrigational fields mixing with sea.

        Wadge bank is a fertile fishing found where rich marine biological diversity occurs. Wadge bank may also be defined as a place of marine environment. Where rich availability of fish food organisms is available. The water depth of this region is low. The physical features of the water like under water current, tides and waves will have less impact on the fishes and animals of this region. Fishes select this region for feeding and breeding purposes. Throughout the maritime countries of the world there are about twenty such wadge banks. Of these one is situated near Kanniyakumari on the coastline of Kanniyakumari District on the eastward as well as on the westward region for about 30 Km. Here representatives of fish species of the three seas are occurring.

 Traditional and modern fishing methods  

        In Kanniyakumari seacoast, conflicts are rampant recently. It cannot be denied that technologies like mechanisation of fishing crafts and introduction of purse seining and bottom trawling are powerful but greatly destructive. These modern technologies scoop up whole shoals of fish right from young ones to gravid. Hence renewability of sea with new recruit has been lost and at the same time scooping unwanted organisms also has broken important links of this food chain of marine ecosystem.Traditional fishermen used catamaran and eco-friendly nets, which capture fish of specific size. The have understood the breeding season of fishes. In Kanniyakumari District it is often described as Thethu. There are four Thethus or seasons according to the availability of fish shaol, water current, wind direction and the colour of the seawater. According to these only, fishermen go to the sea. This has given the margin to fishes to breed and to grow. By this naturally new recruits and renewability in the marine environment is possible. This approach never depleted fish biomass in the marine environment. Because of this, time and again, traditional communities are insisting on the total banning of trawl net (bottom trawlers) and insist on the regulation of fishing during breeding season.

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Page Last Updated On: 08 May, 2017 

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