|Binro the Heretic |
Americans have gone through phases where a sudden upswing in the economy causes the growing middle class to indulge in things they associate with wealth & prosperity. That's the primary force behind this.
We can yell & scream at the Chinese and other Asians for driving up the demand for shark fins, but we just come across as hypocrites and assholes who want to deny them the pleasures they deserve for their hard work.
We need to put out money where our mouths are and actually PAY people to protect the oceans.
Really it's just humanity in general; we can all point our fingers at each other but we are all shitting where we eat in one way or another.
Last time I saw shark fin soup offered on a menu was in grade school, around 1987, and it was about $150 a bowl.
We can protect the ocean and also yell at people who eat awful, gross shit.
It wasn't my intention to 'yell at the Chinese'; I came across this by accident, while doing an image search. It is what it is - cruel and potentially detrimental to species populations. How many people are aware of this practice?
FWIW the Chinese aren't all heartlessly indifferent to these issues. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNTAzODU5NTcy.html ("Refuse to eat shark fin love life")
|That guy |
Do we have a reason to believe there is a conservation issue here?
Sharks, like wolves or lions, are important keystone predators. When they are killed, whole ecosystems collapse and invertebrate opportunists like squid and jellyfish take over.
Its difficult to drive marine species extinct, but many shark species have declined 70-90% over the past few decades, and the Chinese demand for shark fin soup is a big cause.
Eg. on reefs, when the sharksare gone, the smaller carnivorous fish they eat are uncontrolled and decimate the algae eaters. Without the algae eaters, algae grows uncontrolled and suffocates the whole reef.
^ suffocate the corals that are the structural foundation for the whole reef ecosystem.
Why don't we start shark farms? If the Chinese want sharks to eat, and they're overfishing wild sharks, why not get together and build some free-range shark farms?
My galpal's family comes from a place in Puerto Rico that's got a "shark river" - an inlet that was used as a dumping point for a bunch of slaughterhouses. Sharks are all over the place and nobody can use the river anymore, so why not seal it off, raise sharks on the animal refuse, and use the hungry little critters as a renewable source of sharkfin soup?
I don't think they're dead yet.
Binro the Heretic
Some probably are not. They take them out of the nets, slice the fins off, send the fins to the freezer and huck the rest of the shark over the side.
And a lot of the people doing this are LITERAL slave labor, i.e. they took what they thought was a legit job then had all their papers stolen and were taken out to international waters. Other boats come up to collect the catch and drop off supplies so they don't run the risk of losing their crew if they get close to shore.
As a scuba diver and environmentalist, FUCK the Chinese.
This video demonstrates the ying and yang of nature. The byproduct of shark fin soup is fin-less shark soup. Everything is in balance.
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