Fair-Trade Pets- Cardinal Tetras
Fair-Trade Pets? Eco-Fish Touted to Save Amazon Enclave- Adrianne Appel
for National Geographic News
March 28, 2007
Starbucks does it. Chocolate companies do it. Now pet stores are brandishing the "fair trade" label.
Groups hope to convince aquarium owners to buy eco-friendly, fair-trade fish as a way to save part of the Brazilian rain forest (interactive map: Amazon rain forest).
The flashy red-and-blue-striped cardinal tetra fish provides income for rural communities in the Rio Negro region, near the city of Barcelos.
Using hand-paddled canoes and small nets in flooded, forested areas, the low-tech fishers have kept regional stocks healthy for more than 50 years.
But commercial fish farms in Florida recently learned to breed the finicky cardinals in captivity. Now some conservationists fear the tank-raised tetras will lead to a degradation of Rio Negro livelihoods and consequently its ecosystems.
"If this threat is untended, it could result in the collapse of the Rio Negro industry," said Scott Dowd, senior aquarist at the New England Aquarium in Boston, Massachusetts.
For the full article, click on the link above.
This is an interesting side effect (if not a sad one) of fish farming and breeding of fish or other inhabitants for private aquariums.
I do not want to pretend to have the answer here, as I still strongly support aquarium breeding programs as I believe this is the best to keep our hobby from destroying habitats from freshwater to saltwater to coral reefs.
This is an unfortunate side effect that can hopefully be worked out in some way.
For more information about Freshwater Aquarium Basics, please follow this link:
FRESHWATER AQUARIUM CARE