Re: NANFA-L-- Fw: NAS Species Alert - Piaractus brachypomus

Subject: Re: NANFA-L-- Fw: NAS Species Alert - Piaractus brachypomus
From: Peter Unmack (peter.lists-in-)
Date: Thu Nov 04 2004 - 12:04:17 CST

On Thu, 4 Nov 2004 wrote:

> I am perfectly comfortable with reasonable laws, I have no problem with laws
> forbidding the release of aquarium fish. What I do have a problem with is
> aquarium hobby getting the lions share of the blame for exotic release and habitat
> destruction when the reality is that most of the exotic problem is the
> release of fish for sport fishing or food fish.

I don't think anyone is suggesting the aquarium hobby is the greatest
threat posed to aquatic communities. Most folks involved in aquatic
invasive fish research recognize that sport fishes have had a major
impact. But aquarium fishes are still a part of that problem, albeit a
smaller part. And who is to say that some species in the aquarium hobby
are not dangerous in some warmer parts of the USA, but just haven't been
released by anyone? It only takes one species to go haywire and cause
major losses. Cuatro Cienegas as Dave pointed out is a major example of
this. It is only a small place, but has around 20 species and subspecies,
most of which are endemic. When I first visited in 1995 there were
no exotic fishes established. Today the place is being over run with
jewel cichlids to the extreme. The continued existance of this entire
ecosystem is now threatened by this one aquarium species.

> Are you saying that live bearers like mollies and platies have taken up
> habitats in mountain streams in the rocky mountains? How extensive is
> are these populations?

They don't have to be very extensive to wipe out a pupfish or springfish.
Most of the aquatic habiats in dry states like Nevada are springs.

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: Fri Dec 31 2004 - 12:42:46 CST