Human impacts on the environment have reduced populations of wild species to dangerously low levels.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in worldwide fisheries, where thanks to overfishing and habitat destruction, countless species and populations of fish are on the brink of disappearing forever. To attempt to mitigate the dire situation, captive breeding, the controlled breeding of organisms in protected environments, is regularly initiated.
Despite its popularity, does captive breeding actually work? In the current issue of Evolutionary Applications (1:4), Dr. Dylan Fraser of Dalhousie University provides a candid look at whether these breeding programs are fulfilling their mandates.
Using salmonids (the economically crucial group of fish that include salmon and trout) to illustrate his point, Fraser questions whether captive breeding is doing more harm than good. In his comprehensive review of over 300 papers, Fraser concludes that fish reared in captivity can rapidly lose the genetic diversity needed to adapt and survive in the wild, and that the rate of loss of diversity can both vary across breeding programs and be species specific. To complicate matters further, Fraser points out that that we simply do not know how captive-bred fish will perform once released back into the wild.
Unfortunately, without captive breeding to bolster their numbers, we may soon have too few individuals from which to repopulate disappearing fish populations, leaving us essentially in a fisheries catch-22.
Fraser concludes that not only do more data on the effects of captive breeding on the genetic diversity of fishes need to be collected, but also that alternatives to captive breeding, such as the live freezing of fish sperm of diverse genetic backgrounds, or the physical relocation of fish populations from one site to another, need more serious consideration.
Finbar Galligan | Source: alphagalileo
Further information: www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/120126564/abstract
Further Reports about: A Fisheries Catch-22 > captive breeding > Conserving biodiversity > countless species > disappearing > fish populations > Fisheries > genetic diversity > habitat destruction > Overfishing > wild species
More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:
Conservationists release manual on protecting great apes in forest concessions
22.05.2013 | Wildlife Conservation Society
Study reveals how fishing gear can cause slow death of whales
22.05.2013 | Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
A fried breakfast food popular in Spain provided the inspiration for the development of doughnut-shaped droplets that may provide scientists with a new approach for studying fundamental issues in physics, mathematics and materials.
The doughnut-shaped droplets, a shape known as toroidal, are formed from two dissimilar liquids using a simple rotating stage and an injection needle. About a millimeter in overall size, the droplets are produced individually, their shapes maintained by a surrounding springy material made of polymers.
Droplets in this toroidal shape made ...
Frauhofer FEP will present a novel roll-to-roll manufacturing process for high-barriers and functional films for flexible displays at the SID DisplayWeek 2013 in Vancouver – the International showcase for the Display Industry.
Displays that are flexible and paper thin at the same time?! What might still seem like science fiction will be a major topic at the SID Display Week 2013 that currently takes place in Vancouver in Canada.
High manufacturing cost and a short lifetime are still a major obstacle on ...
University of Würzburg physicists have succeeded in creating a new type of laser.
Its operation principle is completely different from conventional devices, which opens up the possibility of a significantly reduced energy input requirement. The researchers report their work in the current issue of Nature.
It also emits light the waves of which are in phase with one another: the polariton laser, developed ...
Innsbruck physicists led by Rainer Blatt and Peter Zoller experimentally gained a deep insight into the nature of quantum mechanical phase transitions.
They are the first scientists that simulated the competition between two rival dynamical processes at a novel type of transition between two quantum mechanical orders. They have published the results of their work in the journal Nature Physics.
“When water boils, its molecules are released as vapor. We call this ...
Researchers have shown that, by using global positioning systems (GPS) to measure ground deformation caused by a large underwater earthquake, they can provide accurate warning of the resulting tsunami in just a few minutes after the earthquake onset.
For the devastating Japan 2011 event, the team reveals that the analysis of the GPS data and issue of a detailed tsunami alert would have taken no more than three minutes. The results are published on 17 May in Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences, an open access journal of ...
22.05.2013 | Life Sciences
22.05.2013 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
22.05.2013 | Earth Sciences
17.05.2013 | Event News
15.05.2013 | Event News
08.05.2013 | Event News