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Floods trigger influx of alien fish species in Kerala

  • Category
    Environment
  • Published
    20th Sep, 2018

Recent Kerala flood released several alien species of fish into waterbodies, raising a threat to the endemic aquatic ecosystem and biodiversity.

Context

Recent Kerala flood released several alien species of fish into waterbodies, raising a threat to the endemic aquatic ecosystem and biodiversity.

About

  • The foreign fish breeds from farms, dams and also aquariums have washed away into rivers after the floods.
  • It is assumed that over 20 lakh invasive fishes were washed away into rivers and other water resources during the flood.
  • Presence of 11 alien species have been documented, including the alligator gar, gold fish, shark catfish also known as Malaysian vaala, red-bellied pacu and four alien invasive species namely the East African catfish, common carp, tilapia and sucker catfish.

Significance

Among others, invasive fishes feed also on local fish breeds. As some invasive fishes are capable of living in polluted water too, they can affect survival of local fish breeds in the water resources.

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