Conservation is important to us at INJAF and an area where “it’s not just a fish” takes on a slightly different meaning. It’s not just a fish; it’s a species in decline, an ecosystem heading towards breaking point, a food chain on the verge of collapse. Modern living can have serious repercussions for the environment we inhabit and it’s important that we understand how various things impact on other things, and how seemingly unrelated issues can work together to cause much bigger problems. With increased understanding we can work much more effectively towards easing some of the strains we put on our environment, and can develop and implement sustainable and long-term measures to help us in the future.
It’s often said that the ‘headline species’ get more attention than those which are not cute and fluffy. It’s important that all species which are under threat are given attention, we need to understand why they are threatened and thus take steps to reduce that threat if we can. The ‘little species’ and the ones which are a bit slimy, have too many legs, are a bit scaly etc. are equally deserving of our attention as the cute and fluffy. Aquatic creatures might not always have the cute factor but beauty is in the eye of the beholder after all! And many of the ‘less than cute’ would have serious repercussions for those headline species if they began to decline.
Our Conservation section is intended to highlight some of the causes that sometimes slip under the radar, where people are working away quietly with the slimy, leggy and scaly, as well as helping promote those which are more mainstream.
However, we don’t want to just sit on the sidelines, we want to get involved and get our hands dirty where we can. So our first feature, the ZSL eel monitoring in the Thames, is where we get to do just that in an ‘every little helps’ sort of way.