Investigating Practices Among Fish Farmers That Predispose Them To Malaria Infection: An Analytical Cross Section Survey In Mongu And Limulunga Districts Of Western Province, Zambia

  • Ellah Zingani university of zambia
  • Lungowe Nakweba
Keywords: Practices, fish farmers, malaria infection, Western province Zambia.

Abstract

Malaria is a parasitic disease that is transmitted between humans through the bite of the infected female Anopheles mosquito. Zambia has recently experienced a growing demand for fish, which is largely triggered by the growing population and an emergent urban middle class within Zambia and neighbouring countries. Various fish farming practices are carried out on small-scale, smallholder and commercial levels. Western Province is among the provinces in Zambia where fish farming is done. In 2014, Zambia became the sixth largest producer of farmed fish (mainly breams – a local name for tilapia) in Africa and the largest in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and between 2012 and 2015, the malaria prevalence started to climb from 12.6 to 15.6 per cent in Western Province of Zambia. This study set out to investigate the practices of fish farmers that predispose them to malaria infection in Mongu (45) and Limulunga (30) districts of the western province of Zambia. The data collection tool was an interviewer-administered questionnaire (demographic characteristics, malaria knowledge, and fish farming practices). The data were analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 22. Out of a total of 75 fish farmers, 83% of the participants had good knowledge of malaria while 17% had poor knowledge, and an association was found between the two highest levels of education (Tertiary and Secondary) and knowledge on malaria according to the chi-squared test (p<0.005) and also showed that 73% (n=55) had their ponds near their houses and 3% (n=20) had their ponds far from their houses. Practices such as not draining ponds, working around the ponds at night without protective clothing, and having ponds near households predispose fish farmers to malaria infection in Mongu and Limulunga districts in Western Province, Zambia. Collectively, 21% of fish farmers practice unsafe fish farming, which could potentially increase malaria transmission levels in Western Province, Zambia.

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Published
2023-12-06
How to Cite
1.
Zingani E, Nakweba L. Investigating Practices Among Fish Farmers That Predispose Them To Malaria Infection: An Analytical Cross Section Survey In Mongu And Limulunga Districts Of Western Province, Zambia. University of Zambia Journal of Agricultural and Biomedical Sciences [Internet]. 6Dec.2023 [cited 25Jul.2024];7(2). Available from: https://journals.unza.zm/index.php/JABS/article/view/1132
Section
Biomedical Sciences