Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Non-Native Fish a Benefit Not a Burden

26.02.2008
A major study authored by a leading conservation ecologist from Bournemouth University has found that the majority of non-native fish introduced to freshwater habitats around the world actually do more good than harm.

Dr Rodolphe Gozlan from Bournemouth's Centre for Conservation Ecology & Environmental Change, believes that too much is made of the small risks associated with these introductions.

Dr Gozlan’s study - "Introduction of non-native freshwater fish: Is it all bad?" - published in the March issue of the journal 'Fish and Fisheries', reveals that more than half of the 103 non-native freshwater species introduced worldwide were reported to have no adverse ecological impact on their environment.

His analysis of data from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and FishBase found that the risk of ecological impact after the introduction of non-native freshwater fish was less than 10% for a large majority (84%) of the species analysed.

The research, funded by the European Commission, foresees an increase in the number of non-native freshwater fish introductions. Dr Gozlan believes that environmental changes to freshwater ecosystems will inevitably have implications on the distribution of native freshwater fish with a growing reality that we will increasingly depend upon non-native introductions, especially as aquaculture production increases.

To support his work, Dr Gozlan cites the introduction of non-native rainbow trout from North America, catfish from Africa and carp from Asia to Europe as having numerous benefits. Even non-native species that are considered as detrimental to ecosystems – such as the zebra mussel in the Great Lakes of North America or the Nile perch in Africa’s Lake Victoria – are not evaluated against other environmental pressure (i.e. habitat destruction, overfishing etc.)

Dr Gozlan advises that a more realistic, though controversial, attitude is needed in assessing future risks and calls for a critical debate to be opened on the real threats posed by non-native fish.

"This would mean protecting some introductions that present beneficial outcomes for biodiversity alongside a more systematic ban of species or families of fish presenting a higher historical ecological risk,” says Dr Gozlan. “The public perception of risk is something which cannot be ignored by any government or ruling body, but in order to gain public support in the fight for conservation of freshwater fish biodiversity, the message needs to be clear, detailed and educational."

Dr Gozlan also observes that over-assessing the risks attributed to the introduction of non-native freshwater fish has lead to a public perception that all similar introductions are harmful. This perception, he believes, overshadows the measurable benefits to be gained to the ecology and economy by the appropriate introduction of non-native species.

“It is the over-assessment of the small risks associated with introducing non-native freshwater fish that has led to the common perception that such introductions pose a threat to biodiversity,” he says.

Charles Elder | alfa
Further information:
http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1467-2979.2007.00267.x

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Conservationists are sounding the alarm: parrots much more threatened than assumed
15.09.2017 | Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

nachricht A new indicator for marine ecosystem changes: the diatom/dinoflagellate index
21.08.2017 | Leibniz-Institut für Ostseeforschung Warnemünde

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Molecular Force Sensors

20.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Producing electricity during flight

20.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

20.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>