• "Chotomach help clean the water in which it inhabits by eating organic debris."
• Chotomach also enrich the soil with their excreta.
• "Chotomach, which grow and graze in the open waters, feeding from nature, are tastier to eat than any mach
cultured or captured from closed water bodies."
Interviews were conducted using a check-list of questions with respondents selected from pre-determined socio-economic
categories (see below). The rural settings where the interviews took place included the local hat or bazar, homes, fields etc.
Over three hundred interviews were conducted with both male and female respondents.
Eleven topics were discussed, and information, opinions and experience sought.
Interviews started by asking respondents about local water bodies (beel, river, canal, etc.) and extent of flood plain during
Total Male Female
312 178 134
182 101 81
Poor Rural Household
Poor Urban Household
Checklist of Questions/Issues Used for PRA Excercise
What is the availability of SIS in the locality (species wise)?
Are SIS declining or no longer available in the locality?
What are the reasons for decline/disappearance of SIS?
What is the role of SIS in maintaining the aquatic ecological balance?
Would stocking SIS in ponds used for culture be detrimental to the cultured species?
Do you have a preference for SIS (over other fish)?
Are there any benefits or problems from eating SIS?
What options are available for conserving SIS?
Do you know about, or are you interested in SIS aquaculture?
What is the seasonality of SIS in the open water?
What is the specific breeding period for SlS?
What is the availability of SIS in the locality?
Most respondents were immediately able to identify several SIS species, which often included fry or fingerlings of boromach
(especially major Indian and exotic carps). On average respondents could name 9 species, and some could name up to 15
SIS found in local water bodies. Very few respondents could name as many as 25, and these were mainly fisherfolk. Some
could only name very few-six or less, and these were generally younger people.
A total of 42 different species were identified, and these were ranked according to the relative abundance or prevalence in
the catch. These are listed in the table below: