There is an urgent need to manage and conserve riverine fish resources in Malaysia. These resources have largely been ignored, but are an important source of both income and food. Having particularly diverse fish fauna in rivers provides the basis for a fishery, and it has been estimated that there are over 300 species of freshwater fish dwelling in the many riverine ecosystems of Malaysia.
The fishing industry has generated a substantial income in Malaysia, and although the number of anglers visiting riverine habitats is still vague, it has been estimated that most fishermen in Malaysia are freshwater anglers. Consumption of these freshwater fish in inland rural areas is widespread.
There is thus a need to protect the fishery resources and fishery-related habitats, and at the same time promote the enjoyment of fishing as a recreational activity. This paper aims to identify the riverine fish ecosystems in Malaysia, as well as to suggest achievable management and conservation plans in order to preserve this valuable resource.