Over 90 species of endangered fish are caught legally by industrial fisheries globally. Australian researchers went out of their way to try and acquire a solution to this problem. The scientists found that eating more jellyfish instead could be one way to move towards more sustainable fishing.
Difference Between Fish and Jellyfish
One researcher, Marine biologist Lisa-ann Gershwin, revealed why they believed jellyfish could most likely provide a long-term solution. Miss Gershwin started by stating that numerous people like fishing as it eventually ends in them having a nice meal. When fishermen or just normal individuals catch fish, they take them out of the water, and they die. If the fish caught are endangered, they are lost for good.
When jellyfish are taken out of the ecosystem, however, their genetic identity continues on. This can be compared to how someone picks an apple from a tree. When someone plucks an apple from an apple tree, the tree continues producing more apples. Some of these new apples produced are genetically identical to other apples. Even if someone picks every apple from the tree, the tree still produces more fruit.
Jellyfish behave like the apple tree and the apples in that respect. Most jellyfish people see in the sea are actually clone mates of other jellyfish. So from a fishery point of view, jellyfish are kind of the perfect fish because they are a renewable resource.
Which Species to Eat
When the researchers figured out that jellyfish could provide a sustainable fishing solution, they then had to determine which species of jellyfish people could eat. There are numerous species of jellyfish that people could eat in Australia. However, a common one is called the blue blubber or the brown blubber, which is actually of the same species.
The blue blubbers are blue and bright, and they are in great numbers. The fish are so many, and it’s impossible to miss them in the sea. Additionally, some spotted can be so thick that someone could practically walk across them. Because they are edible, the blue blubbers are actually fished for export, and so far, it’s proven to be a very lucrative fishery.
Jellyfish provide 36 calories per three-ounce serving, making them great diet food. These calories are similar to the ones someone would get from eating iceberg lettuce but with protein. When it comes to taste, they don’t have a flavor themselves; they take on the flavor of whatever sauce they’re in. So when they are cooked in a good sauce, they taste delicious.
In many ways, jellyfish are the perfect food, and a lot of people love it. They are considered a gourmet food item in many cuisines and have been for thousands of years. The fish have a funny chewy crunch thing, kind of like a cross between cucumbers and rubber bands. Some people like the feeling going on in their mouth while others don’t.
Although jellyfish are renewable, they too can be over fished. If the fishing is not well managed, this could harm ecosystems. But there isn’t any biological reason not to fish jellyfish; neither is there a culinary reason discouraging fishing.