Fish pee: An elixir for coral reef ecosystems cut by overfishing
The researchers found that in reefs where predatory fish thrived, the corals showed signs of having a bountiful diet.
New Delhi: The dying coral reefs are the most burning topic these days and everyone is blaming climate change for this.
But, hang on. Climate change is not the only culprit. Overfishing another crucial factor which is not only hampering the marine ecosystem but also causing death of colorful corals.
A recent study showed that dwindling fish population is cutting an essential source of nutrient for corals- the fish urine. The study, published in Nature Communication, revealed that fish pee contains phosphorous. The combination of phosphorous and nitrogen, that comes from gills of fish, is very important for the survival and growth of coral reef environments.
The researchers found that in reefs where predatory fish thrived, the corals showed signs of having a bountiful diet. Reefs with fewer fish lacked necessary nutrients by as much as 50 percent, as per ZME Science.
“Fish hold a large proportion, if not most, of the nutrients in a coral reef in their tissue, and they’re also in charge of recycling them. If you take the big fish out, you’re removing all of those nutrients from the ecosystem” Jacob Allgeier, study author and an ecologist at the University of Washington, said in a statement.
He added that this finding will help in finding the different ways how fishing. This will also help in developing more efficient conservative practices that strike a balance between between fish population and health of corals.