Overfishing, fishing faster than the fish can grow and breed to maintain sustainable populations, is a big ecological and industrial challenge. The fish we catch are now smaller and fewer than in decades past, key fish populations have been exhausted, and changes like these quickly affect food webs around the globe.
But this problem, Sir David Attenborough explains in this Our Planet/WWF International video, How To Save Our Coastal Seas, is very solvable “thanks to the special nature of fish.”
Most coastal fish grow fast and have lots of young. In fact, fish never stop growing, and as a fish grows bigger it has exponentially more young. More older fish in the sea would mean lots and lots more fish in the sea, and ultimately, lots more of the creatures that eat fish, too.
The solution to overfishing is, therefore, simple: We need to stop fishing in many of the places where fish breed and grow big.
Learn more about how marine reserves and smart fishing can help replenish these vital ecosystems, and how these strategies can increase the hauls of those in the fishing industry. “Globally, we could increase profits by 53 billion U.S. dollars per year, and we could keep catching this amount of fish forever.”
The program Our Planet, narrated by Attenborough, is on Netflix. Plus, learn how Peru created a sustainable system, becoming the home for the World’s Biggest Fishery:
Watch this next: Why is biodiversity so important?
Related resources: Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch and The Smithsonian’s Success Stories in Ocean Conservation.
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