Paul Greenberg grew up fishing in a pond near his house, so he knew the waters well and the species and abundance of aquatic life that lived there at the time. It really seemed like fishing was his passion, as he grew up spending his free time at the pond catching fish. The fish were numerous, and he memorized the flow of species as the seasons changed due to the sheer amount of time he spent there. Years later, he came back to the pond and fished, only to find no fish. It was probably really strange for him, as he grew up knowing the populations of those waters, and the pond would have seemed like a constant in his life. Now that constant had changed, and it makes sense that he would have poured his energy into finding the cause and exploring the new patterns across the world.
I haven’t had an experience like this in my life. I haven’t lived in one place for a really long time, and I don’t have anything in my life like the fishing pond was to him. However, if I was to return to Anchorage and see the population of resident moose drastically depleted, or the places of nature in the city completely repopulated with different trees and animals, I would probably want to know more about what happened.
I think Greenberg would put the health of our world fisheries in a declining state rather than a positive one. All he has found so far is that native species of fish are no longer abundant, and that instead four other species are taking their place. This seems like a big change, and I would think he would say that the overall health is on the more negative end of the spectrum, such as 6.
I think Greenberg will have a more positive outlook by the end of the book, when his research is culminated and he knows more about fisheries in the entirety of the world rather than simply his hometown pond.