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Documentation of indigenous fishing knowledge: a qualitative study of the Ilaje Fishing Settlement in Epe, Lagos, Nigeria

B. A. Ajiboye
John E. Ibeachusim
John O. Monu


Indigenous knowledge (IK) is the unique knowledge system confined to a particular people who are related either by language or tribe in their natural environment. This knowledge system has remained a social capital and veritable asset that helps to sustain a society and its environment in various parts of the globe. Previous studies on indigenous knowledge systems have concentrated on its application to food preparation and preservation, healthcare and birth control, agriculture and pastoralism. This particular study was carried out to investigate the use of IK in fishing by the Ilaje Community of Epe, Lagos Nigeria. Exploratory research design was adopted. Population comprised 1,500 community members. Qualitative data was collected using in-depth interviews conducted among 19 purposively selected members of two focus groups in the community. Data were analysed using content and thematic analyses. Findings revealed that every indigenous Ilaje has vast traditional knowledge in artisanal fishing. Also, that Ilajes isplay extensive mastery of the use of two traditional fishing techniques which are ‘‘Filogba’’ and ‘’Arere’’. Results further showed that the two traditional fishing methods are highly productive and cost effective. The study recommended the preservation of Ilaje indigenous knowledge in fishing and its projection, documentation and communication for global accessibility and utilisation.

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print ISSN: 0331-8214