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NFC: Too much awareness?

My fellow fish-heads,

We have all claimed that what the world needs is more awareness 
of our native fishes, etc.  That way, people will stand up and say, 
"Hey, we need to make efforts to keep this resource available for 
our children's children's children, etc."  But my friends, there is a 
sinister side to this too.  I recently had an interesting conversation 
with my friend Mike Stegall, currently the head aquarist at the 
Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (whom I have enlisted as 
my official "leaflet-hander-outer"), and former NANFA member.  He 
stated that several years ago an article appeared in American 
Currents detailing the exact location of several collecting sites in 
the Okefenokee, and what the author found there.  Shortly after this 
article appeared, "caravans" of collectors invaded these exact 
spots (no others) and severely depleted those populations.  I said I 
wouldn't have thought that many people would have taken an 
interest, to which he replied "Nobody did.  I guess the fact that it 
was the Okefenokee had a lot to do with it."

Now, there was no survey done here, so you can take this 
anecdote for whatever you think it's worth.  But, to quote the old 
Eagles tune, "...call some place paradise, kiss it goodbye!"

Can you imagine what would happen if our native fishes became 
commercially important (e.g. a sharp increase in popularity)?  
Good, bad, or ugly?  I'd like to hear opinions on this.


"If you want to save Flipper, EAT Flipper!" - Rush Limbaugh


Greater American Freshwater Fishes Resource Site (GAFFeRs):  http://www.localink4.com/~archimedes/

"Fie on thee, fellow!  Whence come these fishes?" - Scheherazade

"Any fish with good teeth is liable to use them." - Wm. T. Innes