Are you seafood savvy?

seafood selection
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Do you love seafood? Do you consider yourself savvy about where seafood comes from, how it's caught and the real names of popular fish? Test your knowledge!

Question 1 of 11

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seafood market counter
What is the most valuable traded seafood product in the world today?

The farmed shrimp market has one of the highest growth rates in aquaculture, growing by 10% annually to keep up with demand. The average American eats 4 pounds of shrimp a year! Unfortunately, about 90 percent of what we eat is imported from countries that use environmentally destructive practices. Though the sustainable market is growing, it's not easy to find sustainably sourced shrimp.

Question 2 of 11

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canned tuna
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How old is the canned tuna industry?

Tuna was first canned in 1903 and quickly rose to popularity among consumers. In fact, canned tuna is the second most consumed seafood product in the U.S., second only to shrimp. Americans consume an average of 2.7 pounds per person every year!

Question 3 of 11

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fisherman pulling in net
What is bycatch?

Bycatch is anything fishermen didn't intend to catch. Using industrial fishing methods like longlines that stretch for 50 miles or more and bottom trawls that drag up everything they come across along the sea floor, fishing vessels catch everything — from sharks to sea birds, turtles, seals, whales, dolphins and corals — all of which are typically thrown back into the ocean as waste.

Question 4 of 11

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aquaculture system
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What was one of the first species of fish to be grown in an aquaculture system?

Aquaculture is thousands of years old, starting in China around 2000 B.C., when farmers raised carp in their rice paddies as part of a polyculture system. Carp would feed on insects and other pests while fertilizing the paddies. Carp is still a popular fish for aquaculture systems today.

Question 5 of 11

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reef shark cutting through a school of fish
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What is NOT a reason for the alarming decline of sharks in recent decades?

Every year, humans kill an estimated 100 million sharks. More than 55 percent of shark species are threatened or at the brink of extinction, primarily due to the active targeting of sharks for their fins. Some shark populations have declined by 60-70%.

Question 6 of 11

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chilean seabass served as a meal
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What's the real name for Chilean sea bass?

Chilean sea bass is name made up by fish wholesaler Lee Latz in 1977. He thought Americans would find that name more appealing than Patagonian toothfish — which is neither a bass, nor always caught in Chilean waters. But the name caught on enough that the FDA approved the name in 1994.

Question 7 of 11

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spiny lobster
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How many years does it take for a lobster to grow large enough to be collected by commercial fishermen?

Lobsters never stop growing, so they never hit a "fully grown" size. And because they can live to be about 50 years or older in the wild, they take their sweet time getting bigger. It takes a lobster between five to eight years to reach the minimum size for commercial fishing.

Question 8 of 11

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shrimp farm in thailand
What important natural habitat has shrimp farming negatively affected over the last few decades?

Shrimp farming has boomed over the last several decades, but as commercial operations have grown, many coastal habitats have suffered. Mangrove forests (vital habitat for wildlife and coastal fisheries as well as protection from storms) have been plowed over to make room for farms. Meanwhile, waste and pollutants from these intensive operations — including uneaten feed, bacteria, carcinogenic antibiotics and other chemicals — wreak havoc on ecosystems and other species.

Question 9 of 11

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mussel farm
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What benefit does a mussel farm provide to the surrounding ecosystem?

Mussels filter excess nutrients, contaminants and sediments from the water, improving water quality and habitat for other species. This benefit also makes mussels an important part of polyculture systems. 

Question 10 of 11

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tilapia swimming
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Tilapia is one of the most widely cultured fish in the world. To which continent is the species native?

Look at ancient heiroglyphs from Egypt and you'll see the humble and ever so important tilapia. Its popularity has helped its spread, so it's easy to forget where tilapia hail from, especially when they become an invasive species. Escapees from aquaculture systems have taken up residence from Florida and Texas to Australia, making it onto the IUCN's 100 of the World's Worst Alien Invasive Species list.

Question 11 of 11

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fishing boat with gulls circling
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What percentage of the world's fisheries are at maxiumum capacity or in decline?

We hit the upper limits of the global catch of wild fish about 15 years ago, and now 85 percent of global fish stocks are fully exploited, over-exploited, depleted, or in recovery. And yet, the global demand for fish is rising. This makes finding solutions for sustainable aquaculture — and for educating consumers — more critical than ever.