There are about 32,000 species of fishes worldwide and almost 40% of the species live in fresh water. In Bangladesh there are 260 species of inland fishes (in freshwaters and brackish waters). The most important (culturally and economically) one is Hilsha (Ilish), Tenualosa ilisha, an anadromous fish that migrates down the sea to the rivers to spawn. Bangladesh is considered one of the most suitable regions for fisheries in the world, with the world’s largest flooded wetland and the third largest aquatic biodiversity in Asia after China and India.
The fisheries sector in Bangladesh is broadly divided into three sub-sectors: inland capture, inland culture and marine fisheries. The inland fishery is further divided into two sub-sectors: the inland capture fishery and inland culture fishery. Bangladeshi has one of the biggest and most active deltas, fed by three mighty rivers: the Padma, the Meghna and the Jamuna. This contributes to a high potential for inland fresh and brackish water capture and culture fisheries, in addition to the vast marine resources. The catch from the inland capture fishery is noteworthy, especially for rural areas in terms of fish supply and employment.
Fishery products that are harvested from inland waters are Hilsha, Ayer, Baim, Bhetki, Boal, Catla, Chapila, Ruho, Mrigal, Tilapia, Pangash, Pabda, Lotye, Rita, Tengra, Kechhki, Shorpunti, Mola, Shol, Gazar, Taki, Kalibaus, Bata, Ghania, Koi, Singhi, Magur etc…