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Not leaving things to the last minute is so important but for some reason it ends up feeling like the last minute is all we have to study. However, in this class the knowledge feels very cumulative in a natural way so it kind of works out.
I find it so much easier when I take notes during most classes, but I agree that for some reason it’s difficult to take notes during this class when you’re online. I’m not sure if it’s different in person. Sometimes I look at my notes and realize I have no idea what I was writing about which is abnormal for me. But note taking really helps.
The large areas that fisheries cover make them so much harder to manage! I think it’s an important thing to point out, as it is really difficult to get different states and counties, let alone different countries.
It’s interesting to me to bring in the concept that money > science when it comes to fisheries management. I often wonder about this with other environmental concerns where scientific evidence points strongly towards one method of management or one industry option being vastly superior to another, yet because of peoples’ preferences and our short-sightedness, we may be pushed away from the better (and scientifically supported) forms of management.
This is such an important thing to highlight! Land-based habitats (especially for anadromous species such as salmon) are of the utmost importance. People are so unaware that their backyard streams can hold hundreds and hundreds of baby salmon! Our river systems are our baby rearing grounds for salmon, and without them we would have no salmon fisheries. This is why the anadromous catalogue and the protections it (sometimes) provides is so important.
Eating local food makes so much sense, but I’m wondering how we would force this idea into reality. I definitely only eat local seafood, though I don’t always eat local vegetables as we live in Alaska. Would you apply the local-only idea to all foods or just seafood? Will forcing people to eat local seafood only then make it so landlocked states with minimal freshwater fish access (due to polluted waters, lack of natural populations, etc) no longer care about fish conservation? Do they already not care? I have so many questions on how only eating local fish (or foods in general) will change our views on the food industry!
On top of this, I am also super in to learning more about genetically modified salmon/fish as a potential option to reduce pressures on fisheries. If I was Greenberg, however, I probably would have just added MORE RESEARCH as one of the other priorities, because the more we know about fisheries, the better we are able to manage them.
I think it’s interesting that you suggest estimating populations every year as well as past estimates, because, as you said, it’s very difficult when species have been harvested for so long and is constantly being messed with by people. Traditional Ecological Knowledge is a way that people are actually using native and indigenous perspectives and stories to estimate populations and species diversity when no written history records populations. It’d be cool to see what we could learn from old stories, though it makes me wonder how we can double check this knowledge.
I think it’s interesting that you used flat survival rates to outline lack of hardiness, because my first instinct was to look at the physical aspects of salmon and sea bass to see if they seem like they can withstand a lot, but it makes sense to look at the numbers to truly show how unlikely the individual offspring are to survive. I also appreciated the detail you gave in giving lots of different criteria to judge the fish from. It’s too easy to just look at one or two things from an outside perspective and make a quick judgement on stuff like this.
I agree also! Especially that big eggs help the offspring a ton. It’s something that most people wouldn’t think of, but is incredibly helpful for survival.
I think it’s really interesting to see your personal anecdotes and how they influence your ranking of our world fish stocks. It makes me wish that we could all see how our experiences reflect an impartial ranking of the same thing, and it makes me wonder if we are ever able to see any issues from a neutral and impersonal standpoint. Alternatively, we are able to map out historical environmental wellbeing in ways we would never be able to were it not for personal anecdotes and traditional ecological knowledge.
“Playing God” is an interesting phrase, because it is very subjective to both religious views, and social views in terms of what humans are “allowed” to mess with and what they’re not. What makes modern genetic modification all that different from artificial selection? Humans have been genetically modifying their food sources for as long as we can remember through selective breeding, and yet few people seem to mind having cows that produce lots of milk or yummy, easy to eat bananas. If we ignore the moral implications of modifying creatures, it makes it hard to say we’re doing all that much more to modify our food sources than we have in the past.
I generally agree with what you have said in this post, but I find it helpful to try to play devil’s advocate sometimes. Mostly I find it interesting that you say that AquAdvantage salmon are entirely sterile, because AquaBounty’s own research implies that it is difficult to guarantee that all of their salmon are indeed sterile. From what I’ve read in my own research, AquaBounty guarantees that 95-99% of all of their salmon will be sterile. It’s hard to remove all doubt when stats show anything less than 100%, even if, for all intents and purposes, a stock truly functions as a sterile population.
Your idea that genetic manipulation has potential makes sense, yet I found it interesting that you put constraints on this by saying that the stocks must be created with caution and entirely separate from wild populations. I agree, but I wonder if “added caution” is something that is able to be regulated, because extra caution doesn’t necessarily prevent any negative consequences, and domesticated stocks aren’t necessarily entirely separated from wild stocks. What counts as a reasonable amount of added caution, and is it enough to keep most people placated when it comes to genetic modification?
I think it’s insightful to point out the differences in perspective depending on where you live. Often it seems as if we judge things mostly based on personal anecdotes rather than actual evidence. To see what fish populations seem to be like from local perspectives in many places across the world would give us better ideas of what the health of the world’s fish populations is actually like. We seem to regularly assume that if all is good (or bad) in our backyard, then the rest of the world is assumed to be running in the same directions as our experiences.