Mzee Omari Said Ndegwa was born in Mida village. He is about 70 years old and has lived amid the beauty and splendour of Mida Creek, his entire life. The diversity of Mida Creek is attributed to its productive mangrove forests, which provide feeding grounds for turtles, nursery grounds for fish, nectar for bats and honeybees and much more. To Mzee Omari’s community the creek is a very important natural source for food and income.
Since he was a young boy, Mzee Omari has been fishing in Mida Creek with his father. “Fishing and farming are my main sources of livelihood,” says Mzee Omari. The income he earns though fishing has helped him provide an education for his children.
Mzee Omari tells us that in the past, there were plenty of fish in Mida creek. They were able to fill the canoe with fish and the surplus was transported for sale in Mombasa. “But now things have changed, we now get 2-5kg of fish and we depend on seasonal fishing,” he says. Omar Athman, a 23-year-old fisherman, agrees with Mzee Omari. He says “our fathers used to fish nearer to the shore, but now we have to go further to get fish. They used to get their catch easily but today the generation of fish has disappeared.”