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Commercial Fleets Reduced Big Fish by 90%, Study Says. In just 50 years, the global spread of industrial-scale commercial fishing has cut by 90 percent the oceans’ population of large predatory fishes. By Andrew C. Revkin. [New York Times: Science]
The signs have been there. The Natural Step and others have said for years that every major fishery on the planet is in decline. Americans move from beef to seafood, global populations move from vegetarian to animal protein, fleets get more “efficient” at stripping ocean ecosystem of target species and whatever else that happen to get… and now this report.
But this is just the tip of the iceberg: take out 90% of the top carnivores in an ecosystem, and the ecosystem cannot fail to change in response. How? Remains to be seen, but it may not be pretty.
Carrying capacity isn’t infinite, even if appetites seem to be.