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Research Article Open Access

Influence of Marine Tenure Types on Livelihoods of Fishing Communities in Mafia Island, Tanzania


This paper analyses influence of marine tenure types on livelihoods of fishing communities in Mafia Island, Tanzania. Data for the study were collected from 120 randomly selected households from four villages in Mafia Island using Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA), discussions with key informants and questionnaire survey. Content analysis was used to analyse qualitative information collected through PRA, and discussions with key informants. Data from questionnaire were analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences computer software. Ranking and scoring results revealed that state was the most dominant tenure regime with regards to contribution to livelihood capitals because it was ranked first. In the area, state tenure type was important in contributing to the livelihoods of communities through creating marine protected area (MPA) and organizations for collective action, enhancing physical capital, supporting income generation activities and enhancing natural capital. The study revealed that creation of MPA has resulted in the increase of fish abundance and recovery of coral reefs, mangrove forests and seagrass in areas that were almost damaged before the Mafia Island Marine Park took over the management. Therefore, there is a need for continuing effort in promoting marine parks to ensure sustainable management of fishery resources in Mafia Island.

Rukia A. Kitula

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