Suitability for Domestication

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    Francis Galton has a criteria that is meant to help decide whether a species is suitable for domestication.

    1. Galton states that the species has to be Hardy. Greenberg discusses how the European Sea bass lays over a million eggs and that maybe 1 or 2 of these eggs will become viable adults. In comparison, Atlantic Salmon lay less eggs (500-1200) and of these 20-100 become adults which is an incredibly higher percentage than it is for European Sea Bass.
    2. Galton’s second criterion is that the species should have “an inborn liking for man.” For this criterion, Greenberg discusses how Sea Bass and other perciforms are indifferent to humans. I would not necessarily say that salmon have “an inborn liking for man” but I would say that humans’ interaction with salmon (being inside the water alongside them) is on more intimate level and because of that salmon are probably more familiar with human interaction than sea bass are.
    3. The third criterion is being comfort loving. For this, Greenberg discusses how perciforms will respond readily enough to easily obtainable food but that most perciforms dislike containment. Salmon, however, thrive in containment as it has been shown that salmon do not mind tight quarters as is sometimes the case in nature for them, and they thrive on being fed and even overfed.
    4. Galton’s fourth criteria is that they should breed freely. Greenberg addresses how some perciforms shut down their reproductive activity completely when they are in containment. In addition, later in the chapter Greenberg mentions how timing and placement of fertilization of sea bass is a difficult and intricate process. In comparison, the prior chapter on salmon discusses the ease at which male salmon will fertilize eggs.
    5. The final criterion is that they should be easy to tend. In this entire chapter the discussion that Greenberg has about sea bass are different cases in which people had struggled to keep sea bass alive and all of the necessary lengths that breeders and researchers had to go through to get sea bass to survive in containment. On the contrary, while there were things that could affect the life of captive salmon, most of what was discussed in the salmon chapter was the ease in which breeders and farmers were able to multiply their number of salmon.

    Under these criteria and the points that Greenberg makes throughout the chapter I would say with certainty that Sea Bass is not a good candidate for aquaculture. In regards to salmon, however, I believe they make an excellent candidate for aquaculture.


    Your point about salmon possibly being more familiar with human interaction is very interesting. Though I still wouldn’t say that they have an “inborn liking for man,” it may be that salmon are more tolerable toward human interaction.


    I’m not sure i would say any fish has an “inborn liking for man,” however, Atlantic salmon have been known to be more docile in captivity with reports of them even approaching human caretakers once they relate them to food.


    I wonder if these species had more interactions with humans if they would develop an “inborn liking for man.” Is domestication easier with terrestrial animals because there are more opportunities for interaction or is there something fundamentally different about fish?


    In my honest opinion I do not think that Salmon are the pet fish that require petting to be content, nor will they ever be developing these characteristics such as “inborn liking for man’ There is no connection with the salmon whatsoever on that end and I find it silly. But however take a look at dolphin and whereas they have complete connections and charm with humans I find this interesting.

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