‘Breakthrough’ offers hope for endangered Yangtze sturgeon – Telegraph.co.uk
But a recent experiment which involved four female fish and six males being put into a simulated “natural river environment” for ten days appears to have been successful.
One of the females laid 32,000 eggs, and at least one of the male fish was involved in the fertilisation. The experiment saw 22 baby fish being bred.
“With this experiment, we did not inject hormones,” Prof Wei told The Telegraph.
“We did not stimulate the fish, but we simulated the natural conditions by adjusting the temperature and creating an environment to allow them to spawn in a pond.”
“I am quite sure that the fish can spawn in the river.”
Prof Wei said a similar test could not be carried out for the Chinese sturgeon as the fish is too large. But he said any indication that the population of a specific breed of fish can be increased in the Yangtze River could offer hope for the wider marine life.
State media are calling the successful experiment a “breakthrough”.
The 1.5 mile long Three Gorges Dam, in central China’s Hubei province, is among the world’s largest hydropower plants.
China says it has helped tame the mighty Yangtze River, controlling floods and improving river transportation.
However, critics say it has also affected the marine life by having a dramatic impact on the water’s landscape, temperatures and flow regime.