September 3, 2019 at 11:12 pm #195649jdkelly6Participant
The decline of wild Chinook salmon and the rise of Salmo domesticus are related to each other for multiple reasons. First off, one situation caused the other one. Wild Chinook salmon used to be abundant enough that they could be fished in a responsible way that would also provide people with food. Now, the population of salmon has plummeted due to human impact on their environment and the wild stock of salmon is not healthy enough that it can be fished to meet the demand of the market for salmon meat. Because of this issue of not being able to meet the demand for fish, Salmo domesticus was proposed and researched to the point where we can now farm these domesticated salmon to help meet the demand of the market and help lower stress from fishing put on wild populations. Salmo domesticus would never have existed if we could have simply just kept fishing the wild salmon stock like we have always done, so if not for the decline of the Chinook salmon, Salmo domesticus would have never seen the light of day. Another reason the decline of Chinook salmon and the rise of Salmo domesticus are relates, is that Salmo domesticus being farmed in the same water systems as wild salmon are having a negative impact on populations of wild salmon. Fish farms negatively impact natural water ways due to methods used to grow fish more quickly and with less disease. Medications used on fish in farms leach out into surrounding waters and affecting wild animals as well as plants in the ecosystem. These fish farms can also harm wild salmon if the domesticated fish ever escape into the open water ways. Salmo domesticus has a much different and much less diverse gene pool than wild salmon. When these domesticated fish are able to spawn with wild ones, the offspring will not have strong genetics and will not be as strong as a natural wild salmon. If the wild gene pool gets tainted with domesticated fish genes, then eventually all wild fish may be partially domesticated.September 4, 2019 at 5:00 pm #195668aknoblochParticipant
Your assessments on fish farm impact are very thorough. We have found ourselves in a unique challenge of our own making. Whats interesting is that Salmo domesticus should not be able to breed with Chinook salmon. Salmo domesticus was created from the Atlantic salmon species which falls into a different genus than the pacific salmon.September 4, 2019 at 7:14 pm #195679ramaldonadoParticipant
I think you make a great point about the implications of the wild fish gene pool should it be mixed with Salmo domesticus’ genes. Historically, we have seen what happens to species when humans expose a wild species’ gene pool with that of a domesticated species or even the effect that domestication has on so many wild species. More times than not, the genes that are unique to wild species washes away only to be replaced by traits that only benefit humans. It definitely seems that this situation is heading in the same direction which would be unfortunate for wild salmon, and wild fish in general.September 4, 2019 at 8:21 pm #195688kmwongParticipant
Its amazing how much we have heard about the domesticated salmon effecting the population off the wild salmon. I have heard about how their “bad” genes added to the wild gene pool has been a disaster. The only reason this happened was due to the fishing practices changing to something more harmful in order to meet the demands of salmon meat.
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