Assessing Impacts and Local Perceptions Following the Incidental Introduction of Tilapia (Cichlidae: Cichliformes) in a Remote Inland Fishery in Papua New Guinea

Darcy L. Roeger, Yolarnie Amepou, Andrew Chin, Carla C. Eisemberg, Dotty Ibana, William T. White, Michael I. Grant

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Abstract

Introductions of non-native fish are intended to have positive social outcomes, although they can also result in negative environmental consequences. Recently, incidental introduction of tilapia (Oreochromis cf. niloticus) was recorded in the Kikori River, Papua New Guinea. This study investigated the abundance of Oreochromis cf. niloticus relative to native fish species in the Kikori Town market, and interviewed market vendors to gauge the local perception of Oreochromis cf. niloticus. Market data were collected over eight days with 1474 individual fish observed. Oreochromis cf. niloticus comprised 11.4% (n = 168) of fish and was the largest contributor of biomass (40.2%). Market vendors reported that Oreochromis cf. niloticus was easy to catch and sell, and ranked it highly in sale preference compared to native species. There is potential to explore export markets for Kikori River Oreochromis cf. niloticus in PNG’s highland provinces to expand economic opportunities for local communities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-213
Number of pages13
JournalHuman Ecology
Volume52
Issue number1
Early online date2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2024

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