Where have all the salmon gone?
If you love to eat King Salmon you probably won't be eating it for awhile. King Salmon populations in Oregon and California have dropped from 775,000 in 2002 to 90,000 in 2007 and the number is expected to drop to 59,000 this year. This is prompting fish and wildlife experts to ban the harvesting of King Salmon for an undetermined amount of time starting in May. Fisherman are not opposing this action and generally support it to allow salmon populations to replenish themselves. Scientists do not know exactly why this is happening but believe it has been caused by cyclical changes in the oceans environment. Because of short term temperature changes the food supply for juvenile salmon swimming to the ocean for the first time in 2005 was significantly decreased possibly causing the salmon population to decrease. Salmon disappearing. So what does this have to do with economics? If you like to eat seafood this problem is going to make your meal more expensive even though King Salmon won't be on the menu. Fishermen will need to make up income somewhere and the most likely thing for them to do is raise the price of the other seafood they catch. With the decrease in supply for King Salmon the demand for other types of salmon will increase and make them more expensive. Don't be shocked the next time you head to a seafood restaurant and your bill is more than you expected. The question that will remain unanswered is how long will this ban on King Salmon be in effect and what will this do to seafood restaurants during this ban?