From ocean to aquarium: the global trade in marine ornamental species

Colette W., Michelle, T., Edmund G., Tries, R. (2003)

UNEP-WCMC Biodiversity Series No. 17. With the total value of the marine ornamental trade amounting to as much as US$330 million a year and an estimated 2 million people worldwide keeping marine aquaria, the industry plays a significant role in both source and destination countries. Tropical coral reefs are the most important source of specimens for the aquarium trade - mainly fish, including seahorses, the corals themselves, and others such as anemones, starfish and giant clams. Almost all marine aquarium species are taken from the wild, with few examples of captive breeding. From Ocean to Aquarium presents a brief overview of how the trade functions and the impacts it has on coral reefs, as well as on the human communities that derive an income from trading in marine ornamental species. From Ocean to Aquarium is the product of a collaboration between UNEP-WCMC, the Marine Aquarium Council (MAC) and the industry itself. It is the first of its kind, examining issues surrounding the trade of live coral, fish and invertebrates for the marine aquarium trade, and presenting a comprehensive and independent synthesis of related information.

Reports and Books