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RE: "Extinct" pupfish (longish)-even longer
Hello RJ, your description of an ideal conservation project below is
actually similar to what the US Fish & Wildlife Service is doing to maintain
several populations of Devils Hole Pupfish. They have more of these "arked"
pupfish than exist in the natural habitat. But, these fish have changed
phenotypically, and probably genotypically, after generations of living in
covered concrete ponds.
This fish is relatively lucky, its habitat is protected for the moment so
the wild population is stabilized at around 400. Of course, an alleged green
bigot like me thinks it's a good idea that the site is under close Federal
protection. The ugly truth is that if the site wasn't protected it would
have been destroyed over the last 25 years. Welcome to the real world (not
on Fox TV, either).
Huntsville, AL, US of A
Date: Tue, 3 Dec 2002 02:20:29 -0500
From: "Tranquility Base" <TranquilityBase at NetZero_Net>
Subject: RE: "Extinct" pupfish (longish)-even longer
First of all I do not want to take away from any of the great conservation
efforts going on out there. Nor do I mean to devalue any of the fine people
that care for fish that no longer exist in the wild. Nor am I impugning the
capabilities of any of the fish breeders on this list. And I would humbly
like to apologize for anything else I am about to say that might get someone
or even everyone up in arms. But I remain in favor of habitat preservation
where possible as well as larger scale, better funded conservation efforts,
than we can offer, to preserve species. Keeping fish "in the hobby" to
preserve a species, still seems to me to be a last ditch effort after
everything else has failed.
Lets think about what an ideal conservation program should look like. First
of all it should be set up at multiple sights. Each sight should have a
sufficient population to maintain genetic diversity. It should have water
preparation facilities capable of duplicating the appropriate water
conditions. It should have holding pools large enough for the fish to
maintain their natural behavior patterns and territories as applicable.
Filters, heaters, chillers, etc. need to be redundant systems with power
backups. Experienced staff needs to be on site or on call 24 X 7.
If the facility can not be appropriately located outdoors, synthetic
"natural" lighting needs to be arranged. The appropriate algae's
crustations, etc. from the fish's natural habitat need to be cultivated with
the same care.
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