Reporting on two recent studies, US-based environmental science publication Mongabay described how human activities are placing the survival of smaller marine fish such as anchovies, sardines, mackerel, and herring at risk. The first research, conducted by Australian scientists, found that even so-called sustainable fishing practices are actually pushing many of these species toward extinction.
They also noted that smaller fish currently comprise about 30% of all that are caught for either human consumption or use in livestock and farmed fish feed. The second study, conducted by US scientists, revealed that despite a greater resiliency, small fish are as vulnerable as their larger counterparts to population declines, with severe impact to marine ecosystems along the way.
Researcher and study co-author Dr. Malin Pinsky of Stanford University in California, USA, stated, "The important lesson is that all species of fishes can collapse once humans decide to eat or use them, from sardines to swordfish. You hear the old adage, 'Don't sweat the small stuff,' but for fisheries, we do have to care about the little (ones). "
We appreciate these insights, international scientists, alerting us to the threats imposed by human consumption of smaller fish. May we all quickly adopt life-embracing practices that protect these and all fellow inhabitants on Earth.
During an April 2011 videoconference in Mongolia, Supreme Master Ching Hai discussed the vital role of every species, including fish.