A don, Prof. Diane Avoaja has called for the enforcement of laws prohibiting the use of unorthodox methods using poison and explosives in fishing.
Avoaja, a Professor of Zoology (Hydrobiology/Fish Parasitology), made the call on Wednesday during the 49th inaugural lecture of Michael University of Agriculture, Umudike,(MOUAU), Abia.
The lecture which was entitled, “Within the hydrosphere, fishes and freshwaters: Availability and sustainability in the ecosystem.” Stated that poisoning was often practised in shallow inlet rivers and reservoirs where spawning usually occurred.
According to her, any application of poisons in such areas inevitably leads to mass mortality of juvenile fish that are the most dominant age group in these waters.
“Most of the fishes killed by this method are often recovered on the second or third day after the application of the poison and are therefore, not fit for human consumption,” she said.
According to her, Nigeria is blessed with diverse species of fishes with an estimated 230 species recorded from different rivers by the pioneer researchers.
Avoaja, who was the first lecturer to deliver a lecture in the history of the university, also called for control or elimination of pollution of waters and the environment.
She urged the Federal Government to ban the use of drift nets which indiscriminately trapped all forms of fishes from the water, she equally called for awareness creation and understanding of waters through the mass media and posters.
In his remarks, the varsity’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Francis Otunta who was represented by his Deputy vice Chancellor (Academics) Prof. Maduemesi Iwe, described Avoaja as one of the foremost lecturers in the university, therefore congratulated her towards the contributions to academic knowledge.