Eating Ourselves to Death

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The people of this world are going to eat themselves to death. No not by eating a lot or unhealthy food, but from eating too much of our healthy food. A shortage of fish could very well be the thing that brings this world to a screeching halt. A lot of people don't find this topic that serious and it's just a joke, but somebody needs to shed a little light on the topic.
Do you know what is going on in our aquatic habitat? Do you even care? Well you should, it is very important to be involved with the wildlife that we affect every day without knowing it. Human beings have found out advanced ways to hunt and catch animals easier and more effectively, one in which is major fishing companies have learned ways to catch large amounts of fish at one time. Easily catching fish is not a bad thing, but it is amazing the effect it has on ocean fish population. The effect is so large that 90% of the world's fish and seafood have been depleted in the past century. While surface fish suffer from industry fishing, deep sea fish flourish. America, if not the world, needs to regulate the amount of fish caught by large fish industries.

We need more regulation on commercial fishing if we want any chance of saving our fish for the future. If the government starts regulating large industries and the amount of fish they catch in certain areas then we could see a substantial turn around in fish population, but it is our job to bring this to their eyes. A lot of research has recently been done on this subject, if it wasn't a big deal then why would people want to waste so much of their hard earned money on a dumb ridicules subject.
The following are the most common used fishing methods by large fish industries. Today fishing industries have techniques for catching many fish at one time. Dredging is one method where the boat drags a type of netting on the ocean bottom through the water to catch many fish. Many habitats are damaged and disrupted through the dredging method. Another efficient method is gillnetting where nets are attached to floaters. When the fish swim through the netting their heads can fit but their body will get stuck by the gills. Not saying these are bad methods just more methods should be discovered for the safety of the agriculture.
Today the average person in Virginia eats fourteen pounds of fish a year. The most eaten types are salmon, trout, tuna, and sardines. Do we really need to eat that much fish when other wildlife is going without?
Fish have been around since the beginning of time and we know how healthy they are for us. Nutritionists say one or two servings of fish a week will decrease your chances of getting heart disease. This is because fish has omega-3 fatty acids which are essential to the human body. Fish, other than many meats, is rich in protein and very low in fat and sodium. Isn't this why people should eat fish? People should eat fish but slow down on our consumption. Are we going to be so selfish that we deprive the children of the future a chance to eat this healthy treat?
If we don't slow down on the amount of fish we consume many of our other wildlife will eventually die out, because lack of food. Many Creatures in our ecosystem eat fish; for example bears, birds, penguins, and other fish. Fish are the center of the food web; so many different animals consume them that if we don't slow down then the animals that also consume them will die off causing the whole world to be affected. The following are scenarios shown from a web at www.coolantarctica.com, of what could happen if fish were to die out
Stated earlier bottom dwelling fish are now flourishing this is due to dying fish, because that is what most of them eat. This is proof on the affect we have had on surface fish, through commercial fishing. This flourish in the bottom dwelling fish will come to a dead stop if we keep up what we are doing to the surface fish. What will most the fish eat on the bottom if there are no more fish on the surface dying?
Penguins, if they had no fish, would die out. If penguins died out walruses, some whales, and sharks would die out causing an unbalanced amount of algae and plankton in the ocean, which would eventually spread diseases. After that you can pretty much use your imagination on what would happen to the world.
Different scenarios with birds; without fish certain birds would have trouble finding food and in result die from lack of food. This would cause a flourish in decomposers such as rodents which would lead to diseases. Many birds that eat fish also eat insects, without birds eating insects there would be a large increase in diseases, due to the insects spreading them such as mosquitoes.
Right now it is pretty much like a steady decrease in the ocean fish population; it is amazing how rapidly the fish population is plummeting. It is really like Boris Worm, a marine biologist says, 'It's like hitting the gas pedal and holding it down at a constant level, the rate accelerates over time.' If we don't do something now it is predicted that all seafood in the world will be gone by the year 2048, which is only forty years from now, a lot closer than many people believe.
Switch topics now on krill one of the major other sources of food for penguins, seals, birds, and many other living animals. Krill is not a fish but a type of crustacean which is tiny and pink. They rely on sea ice in order to survive, which is already in scarce supply. Many countries use krill for omega-3 fatty acid pills and to clean wounds for surgery. The amount of krill caught is steadily rising, within five years the annual amount of krill caught could jump from one hundred thousand tons to several million tons; this could really affect the aquatic ecosystem. A good idea from the International Herald Tribune is, 'You actually have fishing in one location and not in another and you can compare the two to see what effect the fishery might have.' Many regulations have been set on places krill is caught the majority of times, to slow down the impact on the animals who need krill to live; like penguins and whales. In the International Herald Tribune David Fogarty states that, 'We've got to get this one right, because if we don't we don't there's a whole lot of dominoes that follow afterwards that just looks too horrendous to contemplate.'
If we take away the fish and the krill there really is not much left for our aquatic animals to eat. So will be able to live without those animals? And if we can how far can we go with our animal races dying out. If you let one race die than won't you let all races die out, when would it stop?
Many species, if we start protecting them now, can be saved and can flourish once again. Right now, less than 1% of the oceans in the world are protected. If we do something now we
can see substantial comebacks in fish population within four to ten years. For example Rockfish on the coast of California were being over fished, but now the government has started regulating the fishing a substantial result has happened. There are a few other places that are now regulated in the world.
In order to not go through a time of regulated fishing we need to also start many more fish farms, called aquaculture. The fish currently mostly farm raised are tilapia, catfish and mussels. With farmed fish you are guaranteed no diseases, pesticides, and/or other harmful toxicants from human pollution. Right now the world's aquaculture production is 70 billion dollars annually. In the U.S. we only have a production of 1 billion dollars annually; the U.S. needs to start getting more involved in aquaculture. If we start eating more farm raised fish it will leave more fish for other predators of fish, which really need fish in order to survive like penguins and birds.
The world revolves around many different ecosystems and if one falls they would eventually all fall. If we don't start regulating fisheries then it could have a much larger effect on the world then many people think.
Soon our aquatic habitat will fall. Many animal races will die. Insects will become overwhelming, disease will sweep the world. This will kill many human beings, but at least you'll have your luxury of fish now. So do you even care about what is going on in the aquatic habitat? So do you even care about what is going to happen to the human race in the future? The way it looks now we are going to eat ourselves to death.








Works Cited

'Eat fish, live longer - Health & Wellbeing'. 7/12/2008 .
'Fish and Nutrients'. 7/12/2008 .
"How Fish are Caught or Farmed - Seafood Watch | Monterey Bay Aquarium". Monterey Bay Aquarium. 8/12/2008 .
'New research reveals deep-sea fish population boom'. 10/11/2008 http://www.physorg.com/news63989693.html.
"NOAA Aquaculture Program". 18/12/2008 .
"Overfishing of krill threatens ocean ecosystem - International Herald Tribune". 11/1/09 .
Perlman, David. 'Fish population on the brink / Experts report downward spiral of marine species, but they say quick action could reverse slide'. 9/11/08 < http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/11/03/MNGCEM5H4P1.DTL&type=printable>.
"Seafood Selector - Environmental Defense Fund". 8/12/2008 .
"Should You Attempt Fish Farming? Considerations for Prospective Fish Growers". 8/12/2008 .
"Whales and antarctica food webs and food chains". 11/1/2009 .
'World's fish Supply Running Out, Researchers Warn'. Washingtonpost.com. 9/11/08 http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/11/02/AR2006110200913.html





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