Life Sciences Research Project

S.A Coastline

Question Posed

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“The sustainability of the South African coastline and oceans are under threat- what is doing this and what can be done about it? ”


The yesteryear, present and future province of South Africa has, is and ever will be badly influenced by our coastline and oceans. The meeting of our two currents, the cold Benguela Current on the West seashore and the warm Agulhas Current on the E seashore, allows our state to possess some of the highest degrees of marine bio-diversity and a figure of species found nowhere else. These Waterss are one of our county’s biggest economic drivers, every bit good as it being a extremely of import beginning of protein and income to many coastal communities, leting people to be able to populate their lives every bit good as they can with the resources available. They besides serve as a great tourer attractive force and as a lovely out-of-door experience for those life in South Africa.


Sustainability is defined as: The ability or capacity of something to be maintained or to prolong itself. It ‘s about taking what we need to populate now, without endangering the possible for people in the hereafter to run into their demands. If an activity is said to be sustainable, it should be able to go on everlastingly. However, our oceans and coastline are confronting a figure of menaces in footings of being able to prolong us for the hereafter.

Why is this so?

The most noteworthy is the menace of over-fishing. The per centum of over-used or low fish stocks has increased steadily from 10 % in 1974 to 40 % in 2013, conveying the proportion of planetary stocks fished to their bound at around 85 % . In South Africa, consecutive overfishing – or overfishing of one type of fish after another – has left species like the musselcracker and ruddy steenbras earnestly depleted, so much so that what is left of them now represents 5 % or less of what the original populations used to be. The demand for seafood is besides at an all-time high with a current per capita ingestion rate of 17.2kg. Due to many by-catch species being top Marine marauders, the unprotected and uncontrolled discarding of these animate beings has an huge impact on the balance and operation of our Marine ecosystems. Not merely that, but many fishing techniques, an illustration is trawling, straight impact Marine home grounds and are consuming our fish stocks faster than they are able to rehabilitate. Another ground is the limited information and deficiency of updated stock Numberss provided to the forces and to the populace. Without this information, the ability to be able to come up with effectual direction programs and sustainable programmes becomes non-existent. This sector is besides ill organized and limited engagement from many angling communities due to their heavy dependance on these resources as their nutrient beginning and their support.

Are there any other facets of our coastline that are under menace?

Yes decidedly. The inshore piscaries resources are in a province of crisis and are consuming quickly every bit good. These coastal ecosystems are some the most diverse in the universe, and many inshore species have a history of vulnerable life biological science and these ecosystems are easy accessible by multiple affecters of their several populations. Due to this they excessively are being over-fished as so many local communities rely to a great extent on these ecosystems to last, and the stocks of these ecosystems can non retrieve every bit rapidly as they are being used up.


Are there certain administrations in South Africa who are covering with the job?

Yes, the South African Association for Marine Biological Research has started taking stairss frontward towards doing overfishing less of a job. In this country of the universe, it’s even more of import to battle overfishing, since a worsening fish population could intend serious problems for our South African economic system, some of which is based on our piscaries that supply the remainder of the universe with fish. One of their solutions- a procedure that has late been tried in America- is called a gimmick portion system, in which fishermen and piscaries are given an allotted portion of a scientifically pre-determined sum of fish to be caught throughout the season. Fishermans can purchase and sell portions in order to do a net income, and the piscary ends up being able to honor fishermen who work for a lower cost and acquire a better merchandise. Catch portion plans give single fishermen a portion in the fishing population in their country, which means everyone is working together to battle overfishing.

How can you as a concerned citizen aid?

  1. Merely purchase fish species that are plentiful in Numberss, and that are non endangered.
  2. Buy fish in season, intending like certain fruits and veggies, merely to buy seafood when the season is right.
  3. Support sustainability groups. You can back up groups that support sustainability in fishing and other countries by merely doing a contribution via their several web sites.

Logo of theSouth African Association for Marine Biological Research

Extended Research

I have included a questionnaire ( attached on the undermentioned page ) as an add-on to my research to estimate what the cognition is on our South African coastline and if the menace to it is known to the educated individual.

I decided to utilize 5 random participants from each class at Kearsney College to finish the questionnaire, amounting to a sample size of 25. I decided to utilize schoolboys as I believe that understanding what the young person knows about our coastline, will in bend tell us whether we need to better in our instruction we provide on the jobs at manus, as the young person are the 1s who will do or interrupt the sustainability of our coastline.

The questionnaire was sent out and returned on the 11/05/2015

Consequences and Decisions:

Ques 1:Were you born in S.A?

Answers: 22/25 said Yes ; 3/25 said No

Ques 2:How long have you been populating in S.A?

Answers:1/25 said for 5-10 old ages ; 24/25 said for 10-20 old ages

Ques 3:Do you believe that our coastline is in a healthy province?

Answers:20/25 said No ; 5/25 said Yes

Ques 4:Do you believe our state has great bio-diversity within its coastline?

Answers:17/25 said Yes ; 8/25 said No

Ques 5: What per centum of the planetary fish stocks do you believe have been used up?

Answers:3/25 said 0-20 % ; 3/25 said 20-40 % ; 8/25 said 40-60 % ; 9/25 said 60-80 % ; 2/25 said 80-100 %

Ques 6:Do you experience that we as a state must happen ways of increasing the sustainability of our oceans?

Answers:25/25 said Yes

Ques 7:Make you cognize of any steps the authorities has put in topographic point to better the sustainability of our coastline?

Answers:15/25 said No ; 10/25 said Yes

Popular suggested steps to better sustainability:

  • Reduce the sum of fish you are able to catch
  • Educate people about the menaces to our coastline
  • Come up with more effectual rehabilitation undertakings

Life Sciences Research Project Questionnaire

The South African Coastline

  • Please circle the reply you feel to be most right:

Q- Were you born in South Africa?

Yes / No

Q- How long have you been populating in South Africa?

1-5 old ages / 5-10 old ages / 10-20 old ages / & gt ; 20 old ages

Q- Do you believe that our coastline is in a healthy province?

Yes / No

Q- Do you believe our state has great bio-diversity within its coastline?

Yes / No

Q- What per centum of the planetary fish stocks do you believe have been used up?

0-20 % / 20-40 % / 40-60 % / 60-80 % / 80-100 %

Q- Do you experience that we as a state must happen ways of increasing the sustainability of our oceans?

Yes / No

Q- Do you cognize of any steps the authorities has put in topographic point to better the sustainability of our coastline?

Yes / No

Q- Suggest any steps which you feel can be put in topographic point to accomplish this?


What can be drawn from the consequences from my study is that the educated young person are slightly uneducated on the province of their coastline and oceans. There is clearly non adequate information being brought frontward by the authorities on the state of affairs that our coastline is confronting, and therefore the opportunity that there will be large alteration in the close hereafter in footings of increased sustainability is minimum. Peoples in authorization need to gain that our coastline and oceans are a monolithic plus to our state, and if managed and used decently, will profit us greatly in the hereafter. I believe that our coastlines are massively under menace, but I still have hope that common sense will predominate and we will be able to keep the astonishing beauty and aura of the South African Coastline and Oceans.

Bibliography and Mentions:

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Journey through South Africa- Writers: Gerald Cubitt & A ; Peter Joyce


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