Global Fish Catches Decrease Threefold Due To Overfishing

Posted: Jan 22 2016, 2:24pm CST | by , in News | Latest Science News


Global Fish Catches See Strong Decline
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  • Excessive Fishing causes Number of Fish caught Worldwide to decrease by Threefold

Excessive fishing has caused the number of fish caught by fisheries on a worldwide basis to decrease three times faster than expected by UN.

The fish caught globally are being decimated at a fast rate. In fact, overfishing has caused their numbers to decrease threefold. Over 2.5 billion people on the planet depend upon seafood for sustenance.

It provides a healthy dose of quality protein. However, exploiting Mother Nature’s reserves is something which is now backfiring. A deficit of over 1m tonnes of fish is taking place annually. 

The main data provided by the various maritime nations to the UN’s FAO does not include makeshift, illegal fishing for sport. Also fish that are abandoned at sea are not counted in the tally.

About 400 scientists took ten years to gather the data from other sources. The information shows that catches of fish between 1950 and 2010 were more than the official estimates.

The really strange thing was that after 1996, the decline in fish population took place on a rapid basis. FAO records show a catch of 86m tonnes in 1996. After that there was a decrease of 0.4m tonnes annually. 

The novel research methods have yielded different data. The high water mark of the catch was at 130m tonnes but it decreased by 1.2 m tonnes per year afterwards.

The conclusion reached is that the decline is considerable and that it is due to overfishing by nations. The exploitation by fisheries has led to such a state of affairs.

The dark figure of small-time fishing and illegal fishing were added to the total and the picture that emerged told a different story. This research is not the kind to be dismissed easily.

It involved over 400 individuals who collected data by travelling all over the world. The scientists employed all sorts of sources to fill in the gaps. They recorded the information on hotel invoices and also tracked the local fish demand in various areas. 

After backbreaking work, the final compilation showed the seamy side of fishing on a planetary level. It was not an easy job and the members who partook in the research heaved a sigh of relief when it was over.

The results are there before us. The replenishing of stocks is what should be done now. But it will take effort. Some countries refuse to rebuild their reserves such as African nations.

Fish is a staple food source in underdeveloped countries and so the preservation of fisheries is a must in today’s competitive times. 

This study has been published in the journal Nature Communications.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




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