Fishing is one of the most popular and celebrated leisure activities. It is often pursued as a hobby but if your hobby can help you earn extra wouldn’t that just be the topping on the cake? That is what most fishing enthusiasts have been able to do, but the depleting resources and decline in supply has led to a lag phase in the fishing enthusiasts’ life.
The fishing industry- a once thriving sector now on the ropes?
The fishing industry has been affected by various factors. Technically the business in not doing well owing to the fact that though there is a demand for high quality fish and often the supply fails to match the demand.
Reasons that have led to a deterioration in supply of good fish:
- Reduced Small Boat Owners
There is talk of fish being good for the heart, as an anti-aging product and as a rich source of vitamins. Good fish is laden with the good fat or good density lipids and it is meant to nurture good health. There is high demand for superior quality fish. The consumption is also on the rise leading to a dearth in the supply. With this current healthy eating drive, there is an increase in demand for fish but the supply doesn’t always match up to the demand. There is a decline in the number of small boat owners and this has contributed to the decrease in fish supply.
- Cuts Suggested By the Federal Government
The Federal Government has decided how much cod and haddock fishermen can catch. This rule has not only impacted the quantity of the fish caught but the quality as well. Therefore local captains are now focussing on secondary fish like Pollock, redfish and dogfish shark. But the problem lies in the fact that consumers wish to invest in superior quality fish that would give them health benefits as well.
- The Rise In Demand And The Aquatic Habitats
The natural habitats when disturbed will impact in the breeding of good quality fish. Due to overfishing, the ocean floor gets impacted. Sea life beyond fish, like sponge, dragging creatures, and corals may also get affected. The marine life gets disrupted and lose out on a good breeding place.
Bycatch is one of the bigger challenges that continues to mar the world of fishing. This is an unfortunate thing that happens while fishing wherein fish, turtles, sea birds and other animals get trapped in a broad sweeping fishing tool that may include gillnets and bottom trawls. Gillnets spread across miles and trap any organism that swims into them. The organisms may be dolphins or sharks. Endangered species of turtles and sharks are more at risk. Then there are bottom dragging creatures, coral and anything that comes in the way. These careless and wasteful deaths of numerous sea creatures disturbs the aquatic ecosystem. The repercussions are plenty.
- Illegal Fishing
The world of fisheries has witnessed significant change in the recent past. The number of fish species has depleted and the demand for products is on a rise. But owing to illegal fishing there have been some other problems too like harvesting undersized fish, unauthorized fishing across territories and use of illegal procedures.
How do we provide a solution to the problems associated with fishing?
The end consumers fuel the demand for fish. Working towards the proliferation of fisheries that have fish for human and pet consumption is the surest way to ascertain that there is sufficient supply. But as a consumer if you are aware of sustainable seafood and you are able to ask for sea food that is sourced through sustainable fishing practises, you would be doing a great deal of good for the fisheries sector. So whether you are a fishing enthusiasts or connoisseur of sea food, be more pragmatic in your approach of promoting good fish breeding. Be a responsible consumer and see the wave of change that is brought about with your responsible move.
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