The Yangtze River has been closed to fishing for ten years, and these changes are related to you and me.

The Yangtze River has been closed to fishing for ten years, and these changes are related to you and me.

  On February 15, 2021, the ship sailed in the waters of the Three Gorges of the Yangtze River. Recently, all kinds of mountain flowers on both sides of the Three Gorges of the Yangtze River have opened, and the spring is getting stronger. Xinhua news agency

  Red-billed gull living in the area of Jijiang Yangtze River Bridge in jiangjin district, Chongqing, Xinhua News Agency issued.

  Hukou, Jiujiang City, Jiangxi Province assisted the patrol team in patrolling Poyang Lake. Our reporter Zhou Mengshuang photo/bright picture

  [Ecological topic]

  "The Yangtze River has a long history and a vast water surface. It is a good water town for freshwater fish to have children and grow up." The documentary "story of the yangtze river" filmed by CCTV in 1983 praised the mother river in this way. However, in recent decades, due to the comprehensive influence of various human activities, the ecological environment in the Yangtze River basin has deteriorated sharply, and the biological integrity index has reached the worst "no fish" level.

  In order to save the aquatic biodiversity of the Yangtze River, on January 1, 2021, the main stream of the Yangtze River, large Tongjiang lakes and important tributaries officially began a 10-year comprehensive fishing ban. 111,000 fishing boats and 231,000 fishermen retreated ashore, which began the historical turning point of "people returning fish to enter". The "No.1 Document of the Central Committee" in 2021 released a few days ago clearly proposed to strengthen the conservation of aquatic biological resources, promote the capacity building of fishery law enforcement focusing on the Yangtze River, ensure the effective implementation of the 10-year fishing ban, and do a good job in ensuring the resettlement of retired fishermen. According to the strategic plan of the CPC Central Committee on the high-quality development of the Yangtze River Economic Belt, from March 1, China’s first special law on river basin protection — — The Yangtze River Protection Law will also be officially implemented.

  Recently, Guangming Daily Weibo launched an online survey on "What are you most concerned about when the Yangtze River is closed for ten years". Based on the results of the previous survey, with some questions that netizens are most concerned about, our reporter interviewed relevant experts, heads of competent departments and volunteer representatives.

  Will our table be affected after the ban on fishing?

  In Huaiyang Restaurant, Yangtze shad is a famous dish, which is regarded as a delicacy by many diners because of its tender meat.

  "Now that the Yangtze River is completely banned from fishing, is this signature dish gone?" Many people have doubts about this.

  "This kind of worry is a bit redundant, because the Yangtze River shad has been extinct for almost 30 years." Zhou Zhuocheng, an expert from China Fishery Association, explained that the Yangtze River shad is a migratory fish. In 1975, the catch reached 1,570 tons, but since the 1980s, its number has dropped rapidly, and it has been impossible to form a fish season. After the 1990s, there is no record of catching it, which is equivalent to functional extinction.

  So, what has been sold in restaurants? "Yangtze river shad is ‘ Sanxian of Yangtze River ’ First of all, in order to maintain profits, merchants actually use close relatives such as American shad and Southeast Asian clouded shad. " Zhou Zhuocheng said that with the decline of aquatic biological resources in the Yangtze River, it is very common to confuse the real with the fake.

  The fate of the Yangtze River shad is not a case. According to statistics, the annual natural catch in the Yangtze River basin has dropped from 427,000 tons in 1954 to less than 100,000 tons in recent years. Even the common "four big fish" such as herring, grass carp, silver carp and bighead carp, their seedling production has dropped from 129.1 billion in 1965 to more than one billion today.

  "In contrast to the decline of fishery resources in the Yangtze River, since the 1950s, ‘ Four big fish ’ Artificial reproduction has been successful one after another, and the freshwater aquaculture industry has developed rapidly, and the table of ordinary people has not been affected. " Cao Wenxuan, a scientist who initiated the ten-year ban on fishing in the Yangtze River and an academician of the China Academy of Sciences, said that from 2016 to 2019, the output of freshwater aquaculture in China was around 30 million tons, with an annual output of about 5 million tons of grass carp, 4 million tons of silver carp and nearly 3 million tons of bighead carp, providing consumers with delicious dishes such as "boiled fish" and "chopped pepper fish head" — — "The annual per capita consumption of China’s 1.4 billion population ‘ Four big fish ’ 9.4 kilograms. "

  Cheap and high-quality farmed fish can’t be separated from wild fish.

  Cao Wenxuan introduced that the artificially cultured fish in fish ponds are often the descendants of several pairs of parent fish. After long-term inbreeding, the genes will degenerate and get sick easily. Therefore, it is necessary to have wild fish to improve their germplasm resources, so that the cultured fish can grow fast and grow well. "To make people eat fish and eat better fish for a longer period of time, we must protect the natural germplasm resource pool of the Yangtze River." Cao Wenxuan stressed.

  "I don’t eat fish. Does it matter to me to protect the Yangtze River fish?" Some netizens hold this attitude. In fact, protecting the fish in the Yangtze River is not only related to the dining table, but also related to the drinking water safety of hundreds of millions of people.

  "Biodiversity is complete, and the service function of the ecosystem can be brought into play. One of the most important service functions of the Yangtze River ecosystem is to purify water quality. " Taking the development model of "controlling water with fish" in Qiandao Lake as an example, Cao Wenxuan explained that "plankton such as algae in the lake can absorb nitrogen, phosphorus and other substances in the water body, and then artificially put a certain amount of silver carp and bighead carp to eat these plankton, so that when it enters, it is three types of water, and when it flows out, it becomes one type of water."

  "I have been calling on my friends to stop eating wild fish and let the Yangtze River catch its breath. Moreover, wild fish will enrich some toxic and harmful substances in the natural environment, but the safety is not as good as that of farmed fish. " Zhou Zhuocheng, a popular science "big V" with more than 6 million fans in Weibo, said.

  What about the livelihood of fishermen after landing?

  In the past few years, in order to promote the ten-year fishing ban, Ma Yi, director of the Yangtze River Basin Fishery Supervision and Management Office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, has been running around the Yangtze River for a long time.





  In order to ensure the livelihood of retired fishermen, as of January 31, 2021, 25.167 billion yuan of compensation funds for no-catching and no-catching have been fully put in place; In key waters, 129,743 people have changed jobs (accounting for 99.76% of the base number), 171,626 people have been provided with social security, and the task of social security for fishermen who have retired has been fully completed.

  In Cao Wenxuan’s view, the ten-year ban on fishing is not only to protect fish, but also to help fishermen change their production and lifestyle. "The Yangtze River ‘ No fish ’ The image is that fishermen can’t catch fish with legal large mesh nets, so they have to use ‘ Juehu. com ’ 、‘ Labyrinth ’ Illegal means such as electric fish can catch a little fish. In this way, the Yangtze River fishing industry is like entering ‘ Dead end ’ 。”

  Song Bin is a native of Jiangbei District, Chongqing. For more than ten years, he has been fishing and managing catering boats on the river. With the increasing number of catering boats, Song Bin feels that the Yangtze River has changed. "Disposable tableware floats on the river from time to time, and the fish is not only caught less and less, but also with a ‘ Diesel oil ’ Taste. "

  In 2018, in response to the call of the government, Song Bin took the lead in dismantling the catering boat and opened an old Songjia fish restaurant not far from the shore with compensation. Nowadays, the business of the fish house is not only booming, but also four retired fishermen like Song Bin have joined the fish house and lived a stable life on the shore.

  After the Yangtze River was completely closed to fishing, a group of fishermen still chose to stay on the river.

  On February 5, 2021, at dawn, on the surface of Poyang Lake in Hukou County, Jiangxi Province, accompanied by the "sudden" motor sound, Shu Yinan and his colleagues began a day’s work, while monitoring the number of Yangtze finless porpoises, while discouraging anglers from using "four anchor hooks" on the shore. "This ‘ Four anchor hooks ’ There are four sharp hook tips, which can directly hook through the body of big fish without biting the bait, which is very destructive to fishery resources. " Shu Yinan told reporters.

  In 2017, Shu Yinan, who was born on a fishing boat and caught fish for more than 40 years, put away his fishing net and signed up for the newly formed Hukou Assistance Patrol Team. "In the past few decades, I have seen that the Yangtze River shad and other fish are gone, and the fish caught are getting smaller and smaller. If there are no fish in the future, where will there be fishermen? "

  As the "ecstasy" in Poyang Lake was cleaned up, the electric fishermen were punished by law, and Shu Yinan saw the gratifying changes in the Yangtze River. "I patrolled 20 kilometers this morning and saw finless porpoises jump out of the water more than a dozen times. They didn’t dare to dock so close before. When I came back from my patrol at noon, I saw ‘ The Yangtze finless porpoise was promoted to the national first-class protected animal ’ The news. Great, the future of the Yangtze River will definitely be better! " Shu Yinan was very excited.

  Ten years later, will the Yangtze River regain its former vitality?

  During the investigation, some netizens also asked: "To what extent can the Yangtze River recover after ten years of fishing ban?" "Will the number of fish exceed the natural carrying capacity?"

  "If the Yangtze River ‘ Sick ’ If so, then the ten-year fishing ban can only be said to be a visit to the mother river ‘ Rescue ’ 。” Cao Wenxuan pointed out that the 10-year ban on fishing is only a small step in the great protection of the Yangtze River. "This is not once and for all, and there is still a long way to go to save the aquatic life of the Yangtze River."

  Cao Wenxuan estimated that after ten years of rest and recuperation, the spawning capacity of the "four major fishes" in the Yangtze River could rise to about 20 billion to 30 billion, reaching the level of 30% in the 1960s at most, while the recovery of many endangered species was more difficult.

  Wei Qiwei, a researcher at the Yangtze River Fisheries Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences, said that in the investigation of fishery resources and environment in the Yangtze River from 2017 to 2019, they found that 130 species of historically distributed fish failed to collect samples — — What’s more, rare fish such as Chinese sturgeon, Yangtze sturgeon, mullet, and Hucho taiwanese have not naturally propagated.

  "The Yangtze shad disappeared so fast that we didn’t have time to conquer the artificial propagation method; In addition, the baiji and the white sturgeon have also declared functional extinction. " Wei Qiwei believes that after ten years, the biological resources of the Yangtze River will be improved and the vitality of the ecosystem will be revived, but some species may leave us forever.

  "Fishing ban has guaranteed the survival rate of Chinese sturgeon larvae released artificially, but due to physical changes such as blocking rivers and building dams, the problem that Chinese sturgeon cannot lay eggs needs urgent scientific research. As a river-sea migratory fish, Chinese sturgeon lives in the ocean most of the time, and there are still gaps in this protection. " How to prevent the Chinese sturgeon from repeating the mistakes of the white sturgeon is a problem that Wei Qiwei has been thinking about — — Obviously, "the ban on fishing alone can’t save all the fish."

  While the population protection of Chinese sturgeon is still facing a severe test, the Yangtze finless porpoise, another flagship species of the Yangtze River, has good news.

  Dr. Qian Zhengyi, Deputy Secretary-General of the Yangtze River Ecological Protection Foundation, recalled that during his studies at the Institute of Aquatic Sciences of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, he dissected 60 or 70 dead finless porpoises, about half of which had empty stomachs or other symptoms of hunger. "They were hungry and couldn’t find fish to eat in the vast Yangtze River."

  With the orderly promotion of the ban on fishing in the Yangtze River in recent years, the images of Yangtze finless porpoises playing in Poyang Lake, Yichang, Zhenjiang, Nanjing and other river sections frequently appeared on hot search. "The total ban on fishing has reduced the risk of illegal fishing gear hurting finless porpoises, and their food sources have greatly increased. I believe that in the next few years, their population will be restored to some extent. " Qian zhengyi is very confident about this.

  After graduating from Ph.D. in 2017, Qian Zhengyi devoted himself to the protection of the Yangtze finless porpoise and joined the Yangtze River Ecological Protection Foundation. Under the guidance of the Yangtze River Office of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, the Foundation cooperated with the fishery administration department to jointly create an assisted patrol mode to attract demobilized fishermen to engage in patrol supervision. "Fishermen are most familiar with the Yangtze River and have the most affection for it. Let them from ‘ Fishing up ’ Become ‘ Fish protector ’ , which can not only meet the demand of changing production and jobs, but also give the Yangtze finless porpoise ‘ Exclusive bodyguard ’ 。” Qian Zhengyi said jokingly.

  It’s not just finless porpoises that have good news. Not long ago, researchers from the Yangtze River Fisheries Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences found a fish in Yichang section of the Yangtze River. Siniperca chuatsi was once an important economic fish in the Yangtze River basin. Due to overfishing, river and lake barriers and habitat degradation, Siniperca chuatsi disappeared in several historical distribution areas, and was listed as a provincial-level key protected aquatic wild animal in Hubei and Hunan.

  "After the squid disappeared for more than 20 years, one was found in 2017, and another was found in 2020 after a lapse of three years. The time interval between appearances was shortened, which marked the gradual recovery of the squid population." Wei Qiwei believes that with the continuous development of the ten-year fishing ban, the scale of common fish populations in the Yangtze River will increase significantly, and some threatened fish populations will also recover.

  (Reporter Zhou Mengshuang)


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