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 Safeguarding sustainability through forest certification mapping
27.06.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht Dune ecosystem modelling
26.06.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

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: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Stanford researchers develop a new type of soft, growing robot

21.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Vortex photons from electrons in circular motion

21.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>