Overfishing

We are fishing to the point where fish and other seafood stocks are disappearing...find out what you can do about it!

What Is The Problem

Overfishing (fishing faster than marine populations can replenish) is throwing off the natural ecosystem of the ocean. Many of the fish that are exploited, such as tuna and salmon, are apex predators that help control populations of smaller fish by eating them. When apex predator populations decline, the entire ecosystem can be thrown off.

Why Is This A Problem

The demand for seafood, an international market, has become so large that fish are being extracted from the ocean at a rate faster than these fish can reproduce. Scientists suggest quotas to governments, but they often go ignored due to pressure from fishing groups.

Who Is Responsible For This Problem

We are all responsible for this problem as we buy into the demand for fish. We are conditioned to ask for popular fish such as salmon and tuna; however, these fish are overfished and in the case of tuna, they are threatened to go extinct.

When Did We Realize This Was A Problem

Overfishing was apparent during the 1800’s when people were whaling. Whale populations decreased rapidly and could not keep up with the demands of the hunt. Overfishing continues to be a problem with many fish and invertebrate species. Fish is the basis for most of the world’s population, which continues to grow above the supply of Ocean fish populations. Technological advances in fishing gear also makes fishing practices more efficient and provides higher catch rates of non-targeted species.