For many officials working in development, documenting issues of particular concern to women is nothing new. These officials believe that these issues reflect women's demands for equality as well as the influence of feminist ideas on the tradition and culture of Africa. Additionally, these officials believe that a fisheries project should benefit allfishers, not just a few fishers while others lag behind or become even more disadvantaged as a result. In Nigeria's southern maritime rural communities, as well as in some central inland communities, experienced fisheries and development officials are familiar with the many stories of development interventions which have benefited more male fishers compared to female fishers since the nation's independence in October 1960. The nation's efforts to eradicate poverty in rural communities have so far not benefited every poor family, more so the fishing families. These trends are, however, changing as most development workers are increasingly committed to addressing this inequality of impacts in poverty alleviation projects. This paper documents women's contributions to the changing economy of the fishing communities in East and West Africa from the past to the present. It also reflects the efforts and contributions of the scientists and practitioners who have participated in various ways at different stages of the study.