In regards to the May 13 editorial on Shakuntala Thilsted’s research on the benefits of eating small fish, “Our View: In Maine, worldwide, small fish could be the future for seafood.”

In the early 1990s, while in Peru, I saw that ecosystems had collapsed because the Soviet fishing fleet had harvested anchovies into extinction. Marine biologists had urged the Soviets to suspend harvesting during spawning times. The Russians refused to do so “because they had a contract.”

The Russians didn’t use them on pizzas and Caesar salads, but ground them up to make fertilizer. Russian insistence on nonstop harvesting caused big fish to starve or move, coastal bird populations to starve and decimated the domestic fishing and guano industries, etc.

After the Soviet fishing fleet decimated the Peruvian fisheries, the USSR collapsed and their fleets made their way back home via U.S. waters, where they overfished and disrupted American fisheries.

Small fish are great eating, but don’t allow overfishing; otherwise, there will not be enough to provide for existing marine fisheries.

Aquaculture and moderation are key to sustainability.


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