Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Not just dogfish and catfish, sea horses and sea cows – Domestic marine species on the increase

24.04.2007
Common perception would make us believe that domestication of land animals has been very successful, however when compared to the rapid increase in the numbers of marine species becoming domesticated these perceptions may change.

“Domestication has had a higher success rates in the sea relative to that seen in the long history of land species’ domestication” states Dr Marianne Holmer, one of the MarBEF authors from the Institute of Biology, University of Southern Denmark, in a new research paper released in Science entitled ‘Rapid Domestication on Marine Species’.

This modest success in the domestication of land animal species can be attributed partly to the lower diversity of suitable land species compared to the marine environment and the reduced geographical range of terrestrial domestication.

Taming the wild

The first records of domestication of animals and plants, for human food go back 11,000 years. The taming of wild plants and animals by humans for breeding, food and protection was initially focused on land species. This practice quickly led to a surge in domestication of land species within 9,000 years of its initiation. However, since the industrial revolution the increase in new domestic plant and animal species has been modest with approximately 3% of the species presently cultivated on land haven been domesticated.

Pastures new

There are several reasons for this contrast between the success in the domestication of land and marine animal species. First, land domestication has drawn largely from mammals and birds, with few invertebrates (such as bees and snails) domesticated. In contrast a diverse array of marine taxa – molluscs, crustaceans, vertebrates, echinoderms, jellyfish, worms have been domesticated. Many more wild marine species are used for food (more than 3000 marine species compared to fewer than 200 land species) providing further scope for domestication and explaining the rapid increase in the number of aquatic species becoming domesticated today. In addition domestication of land species has been restricted to a few regions whilst for marine species there is a more global trend.

The rise of aquaculture

According to Prof. Duarte from the Spanish Council for Scientific Research “Aquaculture is now emerging as a revolution in agriculture of global importance to humanity”.

While most land species were domesticated earlier than aquatic species we are now witnessing a contemporary phenomenon, where marine species are rapidly becoming domesticated. Four hundred and thirty, 97% of the aquatic species presently in culture, have been domesticated since the start of the 20th century and in the last decade an estimated 106 species haven been domesticated.

Not without consequences

Aquaculture production has been growing at approximately 7 to 8 % per year compensating for the stagnation of fisheries, and is likely to become the main source of marine food for humans as demands continue to grow. This development in aquaculture is predicted to replace fisheries as animal husbandry replaced hunting on the land. However, aquaculture development also has, as currently practised, negative consequences for the environment and biodiversity, including the deterioration of coastal ecosystems by aquaculture effluents and impacts on wild species used as feed.

“This increase in aquaculture has global consequences, both as a food source and in terms of environmental implications” says Dr Nùria Marbá, from the Spanish Council for Scientific Research. Also “the growth in the domestication of marine biodiversity will thus represent a fundamental change in the way humans relate to the oceans”.

Full refrence:
Duarte, C.M., N. Marbá, and M. Holmer. 2007. Rapid Domestication of Marine Species. Science 316: 382-383.

Carlos Duarte | alfa
Further information:
http://www.marbef.org/
http://www.imedea.uib.es

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Global threat to primates concerns us all
19.01.2017 | Deutsches Primatenzentrum GmbH - Leibniz-Institut für Primatenforschung

nachricht Reducing household waste with less energy
18.01.2017 | FIZ Karlsruhe – Leibniz-Institut für Informationsinfrastruktur GmbH

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: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>