Listen

News 88.9 KNPR
Classical 89.7 KCNV
'Jazz'

member station

KNPR

Scientists Urge Pet Owners Not To Release Non-Native Fish Into The Wild

Super-sized goldfish were already found in Lake Tahoe. These goldfish grew to be as big as 15 inches and weigh four pounds, according to researchers in Northern Nevada.

Now, aquarium dumping has been taken to another level after tourists found a prehistoric-looking tropical fish in a creek. The Plecostomus, or a common algae-eating aquarium fish, was recently found dead because it couldn’t survive the cold creek temperatures or didn’t have enough accessible food.

Heather Segale, education and outreach director for the U.C. David Tahoe Environmental Research Center, said the incident highlight the continuing problem of aquarium dumping. Segale said the problem continues to adversely affect Lake Tahoe.

She said the University of Nevada, Reno had removed over 50,000 non-native fish from the Tahoe Keys.

Other non-native warmwater fish such as largemouth bass and bluegill can now be found. Segale said researches suspect the bass and bluegill were brought in by fishermen in their bait containers and placed into the lake.

Support comes from

Those non-native species compete with native fishes and change the food supply in ways that are still being researched, she said. Segale advised owners of tropical fish to take them back to the pet store if they have grown too big for the aquarium.

GUEST

Heather Segale, education and outreach director for the U.C. David Tahoe Environmental Research Center in Incline Village, Nev.

Copyright 2015 KNPR-FM. To see more, visit http://www.knpr.org/.

You won’t find a paywall here. Come as often as you like — we’re not counting. You’ve found a like-minded tribe that cherishes what a free press stands for.  If you can spend another couple of minutes making a pledge of as little as $5, you’ll feel like a superhero defending democracy for less than the cost of a month of Netflix.

More Stories

KNPR
KNPR's State of Nevada
KNPR
Along the Way
Sep 05, 2007

Non-native Species