Salmo domesticus is a breed of salmon somewhat like the others but not quite. This type of salmon had different qualities on the inside because it is a farmed fish. Salmo domesticus turned out to be one of the most successful salmon in the world because the Norwegians ability to turn a fish farm unit into an international way of fish farming around the world. Tons of farmed fish were being harvested at the time, the waters were filled with cages and farmed fish were being shipped all over. I think Salmo domesticus evolved because we (as fishermen and humans in general) were not patient enough to work with the resources that we had so we created another resource to substitute the lack of wild salmon that we are causing to go extinct in the first place. Salmo domesticus can be both beneficial and detrimental in many ways. For example, on the beneficial side, creating a new species of salmon can provide more food for people who eat it as long as we are not hurting the environment that our wild salmon live in. But compensating the weight of losing our wild salmon with farmed fish is not going to help repair the damage that is already caused. Farmed salmon do not benefit the ecosystem the same way a wild salmon does.
Paul Greenberg also mentions some of the process that goes into farming salmon, “-farmed salmon require as much as six pounds of wild fish,” (Four Fish Greenberg, pg.43). If we are going to create a species of fish that we can eat but feed it our own food that we should be eating, why are we farming salmon? It reminds me of the question asked by Arthur McEvoy today in class, “What ought we sustain?” Why don’t we sustain the environment that we have already?
Paul Greenberg’s quote, “I couldn’t help but think that in a way the future of wild salmon and the future of the Yupik people were somehow sadly parallel to each other,” (Four Fish, Greenberg 2010) spoke to me in regards to the future of people as a whole. Not only does our history die when different species die, but our spirit and culture go as well. I hear many students say “Salmon is our way of life” so what would life really be like without salmon fishing? If more people could see the impact that salmon fishing alone makes in the state of Alaska, it might be more important to save this species and others that help sustain our way of life. The problem is simple: Yupik people live off salmon. When the salmon start to diminish, so will Yupik people. How can they survive when their main source of nutrients are gone? I agree with Greenberg even though it makes me sad to say that the Yupik will not survive much longer. The Yupik people, just like some of us, believe in a species that gives them life: salmon. Salmon are their culture, spirt, and their hope. Without any of those things, Greenberg saw the reality of what the scarcity of just one species can do to an entire group of people. It varies from the pond at the beginning of the book and I think it’s healthy for him to see especially if he wants to make things better.
Paul Greenberg unfortunately experienced what many people experience when it comes to fishing and even hunting/harvesting: the habitat changes, tragedy of the commons happens, species go extinct and others have to adapt to different environments. The hardest part about a situation like this is that some of these factors are out of our control especially when it comes to environmental changes. I would also be inspired by this drastic change and I would say that I am and that’s why I’m taking these classes. To learn more about my environment and how fish and mammals need to adapt will help us in the long run in regard to saving them for our benefit. How can we help these species adapt to environmental changes?
I believe Greenburg would be disappointed in the health status of the world’s fisheries. It is so easy to destroy our food sources and even though I believe we are starting to do a better job at preserving their habitats, we still have a lot to work on. Obtaining more knowledge on this subject would help immensely, especially if everyone knew our history of over harvesting to extinction.
By the end of the book, I predict that Greenberg will be more optimistic especially now that there are more people who care about the health of marine/freshwater life. Greenberg isn’t the only person eager to find more information, and maybe even a solution to these changes. By putting himself out there with the motivation to learn about his own situation is dedication in itself and can open the door to other environmental circumstances.