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Jellyfish threatens caviar in Caspian
BAKU, Azerbaijan, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- A jellyfish accidentally imported to the Caspian Sea from the United States is threatening fish stocks and the region's most famous export, caviar.
The mnemiopsis leidyi lives on plankton and it eats so much and multiplies so fast that the kilka, the small fish in the Caspian that feed the larger fish, have been disappearing, the Times of London reports. Unlike the kilka, the mnemiopsis has no predators in the Caspian.
Mehman Akhundov of the Azerbaijan Fishery Research Institute said that sturgeon, the source of caviar, are producing fewer eggs.
"You can imagine how hard it is for the beluga to feed now that the kilka have gone," Akhundov told The Times. "When we catch them, we see that their stomachs are empty."
Iranian scientists are working on a plan to introduce another North American jellyfish to the Caspian. Beroe ovate eats only one thing -- mnemiopsis.
BAYGORRIA, Uruguay (AFP) - Uruguayan caviar, once a local family's long-shot business venture, has swum its way onto the epicurean map and is poised to become the toast of the world's gastronomes.
The idea was spawned just about a decade ago, when Russian satellite images showed that Uruguay could be an ideal place to breed sturgeon.
Soon after, the Alcaldes became the first family in the southern hemisphere to produce caviar. Now they are trying to corner the world market through their company Black River Sturgeons -- ERN by its Spanish acronym.)
Mmmmmmm fish eggs
U.N. Temporarily Halts Caviar Exports
A U.N. panel ordered a temporary halt to caviar exports by the world's major producers Tuesday, buying time for experts to find ways to reverse dwindling populations of threatened sturgeon — whose eggs provide the culinary delicacy.
Many sturgeon species are suffering "serious population declines," said the U.N. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, or CITES...
The U.N. body said the restrictions on world caviar trade were temporary to permit exporting nations to show they are not driving the species to extinction and are taking steps to preserve the source of the delicacy...