The Fisherman’s Ally in the Fight against Invasive Aquatic Species? Chefs.
By Debbie Kay
Carp, lionfish, and northern pike are all great fish to have where they belong, and huge pests to have where they don’t. As invasive species damage habitats, outcompete for food, hybridize with local strains and eat other native fish in different areas, agencies struggle to find ways to eliminate these monsters. They offer reward for bucket biologists who introduce the wrong fish into different waterways. They offer no-limit year-round seasons on aggressive predators like lionfish, and they work to educate and gain help from anglers, their biggest ally in the fight against invasives. A surprising new ally has emerged, however, who has the power to educate non-fishers in a surprising way, and increase consumer demand for the many invasives. This ally is the gourmet chef, and many throughout the country have found ways to put these fish high up on the menu to try to encourage more people to catch and sell them, or try to cook them themselves. Continue reading If You Can’t Beat ‘Em Eat ‘Em