126: The Saviour Fish with Mark Weston

Listen on Apple Podcasts Listen on Google Podcasts

In this episode, our guest is Mark Weston, the author of “The Saviour Fish: Life and Death on Africa’s Greatest Lake”. It is always fun talking with authors and exploring details of events described in their books that didn’t make the cut to the final version. And so, I had the pleasure to talk with Mark about his stay on Ukerewe, the biggest island on Lake Victoria. The lake that is shared between Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. In the first part of the podcast, we discuss general living conditions and the socio-economic situation on the island. About 20 minutes into our conversation we switch gears and delve into the lake’s ecological issues.

It is a fascinating and deeply worrying story of the ebbs and flows of the fortunes of the local community connected to the ecological situation on the lake. During our conversation, we discuss issues such as overfishing, the introduction of non-native species, illegal fishing methods, ecological changes in the lake and how the poverty of the local community accelerates environmental degradation. And even though the events described in the book are unfolding in equatorial Africa, a careful reader will quickly identify striking parallels with the situation in other parts of the world. Including our own.

I’m sure you will enjoy our conversation and I would encourage you to buy the book using the link below.


Lake Victoria was once one of the most biodiverse places on Earth, but a predator released into its waters by East Africa’s British colonisers has left a trail of destruction in its wake. The lives of millions of people have been upended, as a fateful confluence of overfishing, pollution and deforestation has triggered one of history’s greatest mass extinctions.

Tommy’s Outdoors is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.co.uk