Sua Fish 11

Seasonal variation in fish occurs and is important to document these changes in order to understand seasonal fishing patterns in the present as well as the past. What I found in discussions with fisheries biologist at the Department of Marine Fisheries (Centre for Excellence), University of Karachi, is that much biological and commercial information was insufficient to understand small-scale, seasonal patterns of specific fish species. Prior to going to the field I was told that there is no fishing during the summer monsoon seasons due to the danger; however, what I found in the Buleji area is that, in general, the large commercial vessels do not go out during the summer. Nevertheless, for the smaller boats and more traditionally-oriented fisherfolk, the summer monsoon season was the most important fishery.

Initially, I was told by the fisheries biologist that these fish were available year-round; however, they are more easily caught by traditionally fisherfolk during the summer monsoon season. It is during this time that the sua fish (Protonibea diachanthus) migrates inshore to spawn and is abundantly available to the smaller, "coast-hugging" traditional fishing vessels. This fish seems to represent by weight and count the most important species caught during the year for these coastal fishing villages. These fish are relatively large and often weight in excess of 20 kg!