This Article Will Make You Think Twice About Aquarium Trade

Drummindot

Member
I thought this was a good read. I'm not printing fingers. This article was posted in another forum and I thought y'all would find it interesting.


 

Ed204

Member
I live in Indonesia and after reading that article I feel bad already.

I'm guessing that they are referring to Borneo? (Part of Malaysia and Indonesia). Because there, turtle eggs, shark fins, rhino horns and tiger pelts are products that are frequently sold on the black market.

As far as I know, almost all the fish in Jakarta (freshwater and saltwater) are mostly farmed raised and bred. I guess all the fish that are wild caught are sent to Abroad.
 
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Drummindot

Member
More than likely. It's such a shame too. I love having a slice of underwater nature in my living room but I don't think anyone needs one at the expense of nature itself. Such a shame.
Do not feel bad you aren't part of the problem. The more aware we all are the more likely something can be done one day to slow or even stop it.
 

Ed204

Member
Drummindot said:
More than likely. It's such a shame too. I love having a slice of underwater nature in my living room but I don't think anyone needs one at the expense of nature itself. Such a shame.
Do not feel bad you aren't part of the problem. The more aware we all are the more likely something can be done one day to slow or even stop it.
Agreed. But here in Indonesia, no matter how hard you try to spread awareness for this matter no one cares and they are like "who cares! It's only fish."

In local fish markets, most fish are kept in overstocked tanks, Bettas are kept in plastic bottles and I've even seen a Pacu be kept in a 40 gallon tank. (He was a good 15 inches)
 

James17

Member
I don't know that I believe that 98% of the fish in aquariums was wild caught, I would think that number would hopefully be less than half that. I assume that most saltwater are wild caught but not freshwater, though we know that some are.
The whole article is depressing though.
 

NavigatorBlack

Member
The techniques talked about are saltwater ones, and are less common than they were years ago. They were why I decided to never keep salt. But consider how many fish could be lined up beside the dumpster of a seafood exporter, a seafood restaurant or a trawler.
Balance that with the areas in the Amazon where there is a sustainable freshwater aquarium trade fishery over 60 years old that has supported generations of local fisher families - we are talking key parts of the economy of jungle cities. There is strong evidence that things like the cardinal tetra or stingray fisheries actually promote environmental protection as so many people make a living from the fish of the forests. You don't destroy the cash cow - you nurture it.
The article is very simplistic. Food for thought, yes. But if you chew it over for more than three bites, it seems to me to be a pretty poor piece of writing. It is a peek at the darker corners of the saltwater business though. It isn't all as bleak.
 
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Drummindot

Member
Ed204 said:
Agreed. But here in Indonesia, no matter how hard you try to spread awareness for this matter no one cares and they are like "who cares! It's only fish."

In local fish markets, most fish are kept in overstocked tanks, Bettas are kept in plastic bottles and I've even seen a Pacu be kept in a 40 gallon tank. (He was a good 15 inches)
Those who think it's only a fish don't realize the environmental impact of so many fish being removed from a Reef. I try to buy fish that are bred in my country (US). I'm not going to say that every fish I've ever gotten was US bred but I do try.
 

Ed204

Member
Drummindot said:
Those who think it's only a fish don't realize the environmental impact of so many fish being removed from a Reef. I try to buy fish that are bred in my country (US). I'm not going to say that every fish I've ever gotten was US bred but I do try.
I buy my fish from a local supplier who I know sells farm raised fish.
 
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Drummindot

Member
NavigatorBlack said:
The techniques talked about are saltwater ones, and are less common than they were years ago. They were why I decided to never keep salt. But consider how many fish could be lined up beside the dumpster of a seafood exporter, a seafood restaurant or a trawler.
Balance that with the areas in the Amazon where there is a sustainable freshwater aquarium trade fishery over 60 years old that has supported generations of local fisher families - we are talking key parts of the economy of jungle cities. There is strong evidence that things like the cardinal tetra or stingray fisheries actually promote environmental protection as so many people make a living from the fish of the forests. You don't destroy the cash cow - you nurture it.
The article is very simplistic. Food for thought, yes. But if you chew it over for more than three bites, it seems to me to be a pretty poor piece of writing. It is a peek at the darker corners of the saltwater business though. It isn't all as bleak.
I agree to better the trade and support sustainable ways of providing fish for the hobby are much better than just saying "don't do it".
 

Zahc

Member
I think this article is more based on saltwater fish and reefs, and majority of saltwater fish are wild caught. Freshwater is a different story though.

Still, a depressing read, the cyanide part is what aggravates me the most.
 

AWheeler

Member
Very eye opening, and sad really.
 

James17

Member
I've noticed on a lot of U.S. websites they say if wild caught or farm raised.
 

aquatickeeper

Member
Poor fish, saltwater fish go through harmful processes to get to our aquariums.
 
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Drummindot

Member
Not all are irresponsibly caught but many are. Many websites from which you can order fish usually do say if they've been captive bred or wild caught. Though it is sad what this article gets wrong is that the fasting before shipping is actually in the best interest of the fish themselves. Those not in this hobby may not understand that.
 

-Mak-

Member
Reviving old threat, apologies;

We studied this in my marine ecology class. Not only are fish killed from these practices, our already shrinking coral reefs are dying because of wild caught fish too. The cyanide kills coral. There are also catching practices that involve bouncing rocks off the corals to herd the fish, which breaks the corals.

And in the end only 35% of wild caught fish live for more than 6 months in captivity.

This is why if I ever get a Saltwater tank I won't keep wild caught fish. I felt bad about getting wild caught amano shrimp, can't imagine how I'd feel getting wild Saltwater fish.
 
  • Thread Starter

Drummindot

Member
-Mak- said:
Reviving old threat, apologies;

We studied this in my marine ecology class. Not only are fish killed from these practices, our already shrinking coral reefs are dying because of wild caught fish too. The cyanide kills coral. There are also catching practices that involve bouncing rocks off the corals to herd the fish, which breaks the corals.

And in the end only 35% of wild caught fish live for more than 6 months in captivity.

This is why if I ever get a Saltwater tank I won't keep wild caught fish. I felt bad about getting wild caught amano shrimp, can't imagine how I'd feel getting wild Saltwater fish.
I hadn't thought about it also killing the coral but that also makes sense.

I have one wild-caught fish. A puffer. I got it before I was aware of all this and feel bad about it now. But, have also decided I'll do my best to give him the best life in captivity as possible and will do my best to not purchase wild-caught again!
 

FishL:))

Member
Oh my goodness.... so sad...poor fish!!
 

JesseMoreira06

Member
I would HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend watching documentary called Racing Extinction. It's a wonderful documentary about how us as humans we are slowly destroying our world and killing off many species of animals and sea life. How many Different species of wild life has come to extinction because of our everyday actions. We as humans tend to only care about ourselves and forgot about what beautiful life surrounds us they estimate that in a 100 years from 50% of all wildlife will be completely gone.

Here is a few quotes from the documentary.

"When you think of mass extinction, you think of a major catastrophe, like the meteor that killed the dinosaurs 65 million years ago. This time, humanity is the meteor.”

"With every drop of water you drink, every breath you take, you're connected to the sea, no matter where on earth you live" .... and yet were destroying it.


I'm not here to preach , just thought it would be a great watch for everyone , it talks about dolphins , manta rays , whales , fish , sharks , animals even down to organism we can't even see.


Just a wonderful documentary , they did a fantastic job with it.


If anyone does happen to watch it please let me know how you feel at the end ?

last quote to end off my speech

" It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness"
 

-Mak-

Member
JesseMoreira06 I've seen it, it's really good. It's by the same filmmakers who made The Cove, which I also highly recommend (bring a box of tissues, I bawled my eyes out). And related to Racing Extinction, Sharkwater is also good.
In the end I feel hopeful, but also apprehensive. We need to get the message out to everyone, not just people who like to watch documentaries and have easy access to these documentaries.
 

JesseMoreira06

Member
-Mak- said:
JesseMoreira06 I've seen it, it's really good. It's by the same filmmakers who made The Cove, which I also highly recommend (bring a box of tissues, I bawled my eyes out). And related to Racing Extinction, Sharkwater is also good.
In the end I feel hopeful, but also apprehensive. We need to get the message out to everyone, not just people who like to watch documentaries and have easy access to these documentaries.
Totally agree with you, it was beautiful what they did at the end of the doc going around with the giant projecter shooting on giants walls , lots of city people gathered around to watch all the wonderful species this world has lost and to get the message across how many are going soon to be extinct, I will diffenetly give those other documentaries a watch. Thank you
 

ChiefBrody

Member
This is exactly why I only source fish from my local area. Preferably "rescues" or otherwise unwanted fish. I try to keep the blood off my hands and be appreciative of what's available without contributing to that industry.
 

NavigatorBlack

Member
I just reread it. There is no question it is a harsh look at aspects of the saltwater trade. I think we have to have the good sense to research for ourselves when we make decisions.
I will never run a reef tank. Personal choice.
I avoid buying freshwater fish I can't breed, and if I get a wild fish, it is to breed it. I never keep single sexes of a species, or lone individuals.
But it is important as well to cross reference this with sources about freshwater collecting, like Project Piaba. It is easy to be swayed by emotional arguments, not read critically and think this article is about all collecting.
Also mistrust an article that talks about saltwater and where the author calls for you to pledge to buy no wild caught fish of any sort. That is a leap on her part, in an article that uses stats but doesn't source them.
There are moves afoot to ban the entire aquarium hobby, which would put several thousand indigenous fishers and their families in Brazil, and many more elsewhere in a bind. The African fishermen I've spoken with are just trying to feed their families and pay for their kids to go to school, and are as far from the world of cyanide fishing as can be. They are small scale and reasonably careful.
I would rather my money went to them than to shareholders in the US or Singapore.
 

ChiefBrody

Member
Also fish from vernal waterways that dry up annually in the Amazon would die anyway so I don't feel as bad about it as raping the Hawaiian fisheries for some rich guy's boardroom display tank. These are the same pigs turning Florida into a golf course etc. If it were up to me I'd feed them to my little friends
 

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