The Ornamental Aquatic Trade Association has welcomed a report from the ICUN’s Home Aquarium Fish Sub-Group following its inaugural meeting at Aquarama.

This global group brought together representatives from the ornamental fish trade, including OATA’s Chief Executive Keith Davenport, with interested NGOs and public aquariums and zoos to discuss the way forward.

Its aim is to find ways to showcase positive examples of the home aquarium trade at zoos and public aquariums as a way of fostering a potential new market for aquarium fishes that are sustainable, benefit the environment, and help support local livelihoods.

The Home Aquarium Fish Sub Group is now working on producing a first draft White Paper describing examples of where the home aquarium fish trade currently provides environmental and/or socioeconomic benefit to countries. It will also look at examples where the industry can provide more benefits to local communities by adapting its practices and it will highlight where there is the urgent need for environmental stewardship or livelihoods that could be attained from the aquarium trade.

“The report can be found here and adds a lot of detail to the future plans of this group. In particular we welcome the group’s work on drafting this White Paper bringing together positive examples that show the good work being done by the industry with wild caught fish,” said OATA’s Chief Executive Keith Davenport.

“This is an issue that’s close to our heart and we’ve already researched some great examples from Peru and Indonesia that we’ll be contributing to the paper. We firmly believe there is a good news story to be told around wild-caught fish and the benefits they can bring to some of the poorest parts of the world.

“Consumers should not shy away from buying wild caught fish and we need to get better finding ways to educate fish-keepers about this issue. Working with public aquaria and zoos certainly offers us a great opportunity to reach more people with this message.”

The Home Aquarium Fish Sub Group’s report can be found here.