02 November 2010

Breeding Nemo ~ Sea & Reef Raising Saltie Fish!

Kelli Whitlock Burton writes in the Globe about Soren Hansen's Breeding Nemo, Maine lab flourishes: where others failed, grad student finds key to raising saltwater tropical fish...
"The ornamental fish industry is a billion-dollar enterprise in the United States, but the sale of saltwater aquarium fish has historically made up only a small part of that trade. Saltwater aquariums were more expensive to stock and harder to maintain, which discouraged many fish enthusiasts from buying the brightly colored swimmers. That trend began to change earlier this decade, thanks in part to a decrease in cost and a feisty clown fish named Nemo. Disney’s animated hit, “Finding Nemo," did for the tropical fish industry what “101 Dalmatians" did for breeders of polka-dotted canines. Consumer demand went through the roof. Hansen’s company, Sea & Reef, is one of only a few whose tropical saltwater fish are grown from eggs produced in captivity."
Turns out doing this is a fantastically technical challenge and is an exemplar of ecosystems engineering!

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