Rob Inglis on another problem with overfishing:
As we’ve mentioned before, one of the most unfortunate (but also most scientifically interesting) consequences of overfishing is that it can cause fish to shrink. Smaller fish are better able to slip through the holes in fish nets and therefore survive to pass on their genes rather than ending up as fish sticks. As a result, heavily-harvested fish populationsespecially in places that have minimum net mesh size requirements designed to let a certain fraction of fish escapetend to evolve toward smaller average body sizes. This is bad for both fishermen and fish eaters, given that larger fish tend to have more usable meat and fetch better prices.
He touts a new paper claiming that such shrinkage might be more reversible than previously thought.
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