Context: According to researchers, the changes in the Atlantic ecosystem can be attributed to the overfishing of Atlantic menhaden.
About Atlantic menhaden:
- Found in coastal and estuarine waters from Nova Scotia to northern Florida, Atlantic menhaden play many important roles. They are filter feeders, primarily consuming phytoplankton and zooplankton in the water column.
- Menhaden are harvested for use as fertilizers, animal feed, and bait for fisheries including blue crab and lobster.
- They are a major source of omega-3 fatty acids, so they are also used to develop human and animal supplements.