A New York Times piece on dealing with invasive species offers up a delectable solution:
An invasive species, the lionfish is devastating reef fish populations along the Florida coast and into the Caribbean. Now, an increasing number of environmentalists, consumer groups and scientists are seriously testing a novel solution to control it and other aquatic invasive species — one that would also takes pressure off depleted ocean fish stocks: they want Americans to step up to their plates and start eating invasive critters in large numbers.
“Humans are the most ubiquitous predators on earth,” said Philip Kramer, director of the Caribbean program for the Nature Conservancy. “Instead of eating something like shark fin soup, why not eat a species that is causing harm, and with your meal make a positive contribution?”
So now you can eat your way out of an invasion? And did I just hear somebody sigh "Only in America"? This is surely far too simple and common-sensical to work in many cases -- but when applicable, it's definitely a way to put your conservationist ethic where your mouth is. The "Save the reef: Eat a lionfish!" campaign promises to be entertaining, to say the least (healthy, local, green!)...
One last thought: it's amusing that this is being offered up as a "novel" solution. Haven't humans (and other animals) been controlling populations through dining since the dawn of time? I can't help but be reminded of this quote from our friend Kim Krohn, in regards to the complete and utter bamboozlement displayed in some quarters when confronted with massive deer overpopulation:
When you have a nuisance animal that's edible and you can't figure out how to solve the problem you are truly stupid.
Alive, Alive-O...rganic, Fresh, and Environmentally Friendly?