I. State what the article was about. What was the main point of the article?
The article discussed the latest method being introduced into conservation biology – the surrogate broodstocking. A result of research in the Tokyo University, surrogate broodstocking is said to be “one of the best things that has happened in a long time” (Associated Press, 2007) for the field of conservation biology. The article also went into pointing out how this method is administered – fishes of one species are engineered to produce another fish specie. This latest method in conservation biology is showing a lot of promise, with Tokyo University’s attempts at producing rainbow trout in Asian masu salmons proving to be successful. The main point of the article is to demonstrate that there are alternatives to saving endangered fishes, and surrogate broodstocking may just be one of the best alternatives available – as proven by University of Idaho’s desire to use the method for preserving sockeye salmon and of Tokyo’s future plans of also applying it into preservation of the blue fin tuna.
II. Give your reaction to the article.
To be perfectly honest, when I first stumbled upon this Associated Press article and read through the first few paragraphs, I was highly-doubtful of the importance, applicability, and most especially safety of surrogate broodstocking in the preservation of endangered species. I also could not help but think that this is just another attempt for us human beings to prove that we are superior among other beings and that science is being used to interfere with the natural cause of events – an interference that has, in the past, led to the unnecessary deaths of animals (Annisimov, 2007). But time and time again, science has also proven that if used correctly it does serve its purpose of saving not only humanity but other living things as well. And as I read further into “Salmon Bioengineered to Produce Trout Offspring” and gained more understanding into how useful the newly-discovered process of animal conservation is, I was glad to find out that surrogate broodstocking looks to be something that will benefit not only us, but also the fished that it aims to reproduce. We are currently hounded by the Holocene Mass Extinction, and it is predicted that before the end of this century more than one-fourth of Earth’s species will completely be gone (Lawton and May). Because of this, it is undeniable that we are in dire need of new approaches to saving the endangered species so as to prevent undermining the irreplaceable order of the ecosystem. Because other means of preserving endangered fished – such as captive breeding and freezing of fish eggs for posterity – have, until now, been unfruitful (Associated Press, 2007), any other method that can result to successful preservation of endangered fish species will surely be welcome. Hence, after being able to take in the success of surrogate broodstocking, I can say that it is indeed a welcome innovation.
III. Did you agree or disagree?
I agree with the discovery of surrogate broodstocking and believe that it can indeed be useful for the preservation of endangered fishes.
IV. Why do you agree or disagree?
As I have mentioned, there is a grave threat to our ecosystem because of the possibility of the wipe-out of a lot of Earth’s species. And this is why I think that any method that can eliminate that possibility is something that we all should welcome with open arms. Hence, I agree with the scientists’ wish to do further research and experimentations on surrogate broodstocking to see how effective it can be in producing the results it yielded with salmons and trout to other fishes of different specie.
Annisimov, Michael. (2007, April 18). The Human Superiority Complex. In Accelerating Future. Retrieved September 17, 2007, from http://www.acceleratingfuture.com/michael/blog/?p=405.
Associated Press. (2007, September 13). Salmon Bioengineered to produce Trout Offspring. In FOX News. Retrieved September 14, 2007, from http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,296725,00.html.
Lawton, J.H. and May, R.M. (n.d.). Extinction rates. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.