Fisheries and Resources Monitoring System

Ghana Semi-industrial bottom trawl fishery
Fishery  Fact Sheet
FCWC Fisheries Reports 2020
Ghana Semi-industrial bottom trawl fishery
Fact Sheet Citation  
Bottom trawl
Owned byFisheries Committee for the West Central Gulf of Guinea (FCWC) – more>>

Overview: Locally built wooden vessels generally of length 8 - 37m with in-board engines of up to 400 hp. Two types of vessels by length operate in this fishery: 8 - 12m are termed small vessels and larger vessels are 12 - 37m. Bottom trawling is done in waters greater than 30 m and mostly practiced during the non-upwelling seasons. Ice is taken aboard for preserving fish. Fishing trips can last up to a week. Main species caught include croakers, soles, burritos, and Penaeus spp.

Location of Ghana Semi-industrial bottom trawl fishery

Geographic reference:  Ghana
Spatial Scale: National
Reference year: 2018
Approach: Fishing Activity

Fishing Activity
Fishing Gear: Bottom trawls (nei)
Type of production system: Semi-industrial
Fishery Area: Ghana
Seasonality: All year

Harvested Resource
Target Species: Flat needlefish; null; Bogue …  

Means of Production
Vessel Type:
Fishery Indicators
Nominal Effort: Number of vessels
Employment: Number of fishermen
Production: Catch

Fishing Activity
Type of production system: Semi-industrial   

Fishery Area
Climatic zone: Tropical.   Bottom type: Hard bottom; Soft bottom.   Depth zone: Coastal (0 m - 50 m); Shelf (50 m - 200 m).   Horizontal distribution: Neritic.   Vertical distribution: Demersal.  

10 - 40 nautical miles from coast. Depth beyond 30 meters.

Geo References for: Ghana
Target Species

Adult & Juvenile
Vessel Type

Vessel length: 25 - 30 meters. In-board engines of up to 400 hp.

Catch Handling and Processing Equipment
Flag State
Protected Species (Bycatch)
Turtles and marine mammals
All year
Ports of Tema and Sekondi-Takoradi. Landing sites at Apam, Mumford, Elmina, Axim
Trip Duration
1 - 3 days, up to a week.
Fisherfolks Community
Fanti, Ga and Ewe ethnic groups in coastal communities in Ghana from Volta, Greater Accra, Central and Western Regions
List of fishery Indicators
Fishery Indicators
TypeMeasureValueUnitTime period
Nominal EffortNumber of vessels 95vessels2020
EmploymentNumber of fishermen 840Persons2018
ProductionCatch 896.241tonnes2018
Post Harvest
Fish Utilisation
Dried, fresh, smoked
Ghana, Togo, Cote d'Ivore, Benin, Nigeria
Management unit: Yes

Jurisdictional framework
Management Body/Authority(ies): Ministry of Fisheries and Aquacultre Development (MOFAD)
Mandate: Management.  
Area under national jurisdiction: Ghana
Maritime Area: Exclusive Economic Zone Areas (EEZ).  
Management Regime
Management Methods

Compliance measure, Closed fishing season, Gear restrictions with focus on Spawner/Juvenile protection, Environmental protection - Binding

Fisheries Laws (Act 625) and regulations (L. I. 1968) on registration, mesh sizes, prohibited fishing methods and tools etc., conflict management in place; enforcement is weak, co-management being encouraged.
  • Aquatic species-related measures
    Minimum fish size, Minimum carapace size, Small size-fish proportion in catch, Maximum Sustainable Yield
  • Gear-related measures
    Mesh size
  • Vessel-related measures
     Access Control : Vessel type
  • Fishing activity-related measures
    Vessel number, Closed season, Licenses
Source of Information
Information provided by the FCWC Secretariat (FCWC Regional Database) and the Ghana Ministry of Fisheries and Aquacultre Development (MOFAD). April 2021.
FAO. 2021. Report of the Fisheries and Resources Monitoring System (FIRMS) and Fishery Statistics Capacity Development Data Workshop. Virtual Workshop, 26–30 October 2020. Rome.  Click to open
Committee for Inland Fisheries of Africa / Comité des pêches continentales pour d'Afrique, 1987 Report of the third session of the Sub-Committee for the protection and development of the fisheries in the Sahelian Zone. Accra, Ghana, 6–9 October 1986. Report of the third session of the Sub-Committee for the Protection and Development of Fisheries in the Sahelian Zone. Accra, Ghana, October 6–9, 1986. FAO Fish.Rep./FAO Fisheries Report , (377): 27 p.  Click to open
FAO. Report of the Pre-survey Meeting to Plan the Year 2000 Survey with the R/V DR. FRIDTJOF NANSEN in the Western Gulf of Guinea (Benin, Togo, Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire). Tema, Ghana, 26 August 2000. FAO Fisheries Report/FAO Rapport sur les pêches. No. 663. Rome, FAO. 2002. 50p.  Click to open
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