Wild Oysters Functionally Extinct?

Add this to your growing list of Earth going to hell

Enjoy your shucking while it lasts. Wild oysters are now “functionally extinct” in many places around the world where they were once plentiful. More than 85 per cent of their reefs have been lost due to overfishing, according to a new study

via Wild oysters in danger of extinction – Nature, Environment – The Independent.

Dr. M (1720 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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2 comments on “Wild Oysters Functionally Extinct?
  1. An interesting note on the functional extinction of oysters – there is a lot of interest now in using oysters to help clean up eutrophied and otherwise contaminated waters. In essence, shellfish people are interested in restoring the ecosystem function of oysters, not necessarily the fishery. An example of this is in the Hudson River, where several test reefs have been planted and some considerable new research is being done on the subject. I linked to some of these projects in my blog post here. Not suggesting functional extinction isn’t an issue, but its good to see some management strategies focused on restoring ecosystem function.

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