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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Enhancing the Wild: A Film about Repopulating Ocean Fisheries


“Enhancing the Wild” in itself is a contradiction. Our ocean is filled with ecosystems delicately balanced by a global interconnection that any outside intervention is bound to alter.

Enhancement programs aim to target the impacts of natural and anthropogenic influences on wild fish stocks in hopes of increasing recreationally and commercially important species. However, many are lacking in adequate research and have the potential of throwing these ecosystems off-balance. Management by collaborating stakeholders taking a precautionary approach to minimize adverse effects on the environment and economy while also working with the best available science is how these programs will be most effective.

The Hubbs-Seaworld Research Institute (HSWRI) Ocean Resources Enhancement and Hatchery Program (OREHP) located in Carlsbad, California is on the cutting edge of such initiatives. Though despite 30 years of valuable research and experience as well as 40 million dollars worth of funding to date, less than one percent of OREHP white sea bass has contributed to the wild population. Now, with stakeholders finally able to express their opinions across the same platform, a conversation about not only how we can effectively spawn, rear, and release white seabass into the wild, but if we can may take place

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