JWARP  Vol.4 No.9 , September 2012
Fishery and the Tourism Potential of Agbokum Waterfalls, Nigeria
ABSTRACT
Species richness and human activities in natural environments are among the most important recreational needs. Monthly studies of aquatic fauna, artisanal fisheries and tourism characteristics was conducted during wet and dry seasons, over a two year period in the three landscapes along the 6817.7 m length of Agbokum waterfalls by using a close-ended pre-coded survey instrument. Through MANOVA analysis of the 1780 respondents we found strong positive association between peoples visits to the recreational areas and the type of landscape in which the respondents felt happy. People who felt happier in landscape dominated by waterfalls, visit the middle reaches of the river for outdoor recreation more often while people who feel happy in landscapes dominated by slow water current with an extensive wide area and floodplains, visit downstream reaches of the waterfalls more often. Activities performed more often along downstream reaches include fishing, bathing/swimming, boating and hunting while more frequent activities in the middle reaches (waterfalls) include taking photographs, picnics, enjoying nature, outing with family and friends, looking at view, resting and relaxing. A total of 5484 fish representing 22 species belonging to 16 genera from 9 families were sampled with 10 species being restricted to wet season and only 1 in the dry. The number of taxa and individuals present at upstream, midstream and downstream reaches were 16 (2003), 13 (1034), 17 (2447), respectively. Tilapia zillii, Clarias gariepinus and Labeo coubie dominated overall catch constituting 35.5%. Twenty five operational boats counted during the period of study, were only used downstream by 25 full-time fishermen, 87 part-time, 44 shoreline fishermen and 36 assistant fishermen. Common gears were the hook and line constituting 45.8%, cast and dip net (10.1%) bailing (8.7%), gill nets (7.3%), seine net (6.4%) Traps (5.5%), lift net (4.7%) Dip nets (0.9%), poisoning (2.8%), cutlass (3.3%) and spear (1%). Seasonally occurring aquatic fauna include crustaceans (Atya gaboneensis and Palaemon paucidens) (23.5%) oysters (Etheria elliptica) (15.4%), clams (Galacea paradoxa) (20.8%), Manatee (Trichechus senegalensis) (2.5), Hippopotamus amphibious (1.8%), Otter (Lutra macullicolis) (0.5%), Crocodyles (Crocodylus niloticus, Crocodylus cataphractus (Aligata) and Osteolaemus tetraspsis) (18.8%). The nile monitor (Varanus nilaticus), aquatic snake (Anoscopus sp), and three species of water turtle (Kimxys erosa, Pelumedusa sp and Peliosus sp) (21.6%). Relatively higher faunal densities and species richness in the upstream and downstream reaches coupled with waterfalls in middle reaches can makes Agbokum waterfalls a tourism destination if only management strategies include Legislation to conserve these natural resources.

Cite this paper
G. Ikpi and B. Offem, "Fishery and the Tourism Potential of Agbokum Waterfalls, Nigeria," Journal of Water Resource and Protection, Vol. 4 No. 9, 2012, pp. 733-745. doi: 10.4236/jwarp.2012.49083.
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