Regulate the sales of topical reef fish from the ocean

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Tropical fish are taken from their natural habitat in delicate reef ecosystems to be sold to aquariums. Currently there are few regulations regarding tropical fish being caught and sold in the U.S.A. While there are federal regulations on oceanic fish, native fish, and seafood there is little regulation on the capture of tropical fish.

The reef systems are currently in decline and the removal of important species needs to be monitored. Many fish sold at aquariums come from reefs in Asia, where cyanide is sometimes poured in the water stun fish, allowing them to be captured. While this practice is illegal in most countries there is a lack of monitoring. Cyanide can also kill coral and other fish. The fish that survive then have to be transported to America and there is a high mortality rate. A lot of environmental impacts have been created to get just one tropical reef fish into an aquarium. 

There is also the potential for the release of an invasive species in our waters. Lionfish have become a severe threat to the reef systems in the Atlantic Ocean, out-competing the native fish. It is believed that Lionfish were introduced through the aquarium trade. 

There is a solution. The United States Fish and Wildlife Service could add regulations to the capture, sales and disposal of reef fish. They could work in conjunction with the Marine Aquarium Council which has already devised MAC Certification system that promotes sustainable reefs and environmental stewardship. We need stricter regulations to protect our reefs! Please sign this petition if you agree that regulations should be made on the collection, transport, and sales of tropical reef fish.

This petition created by Nicole Finkelstein



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