Climate Change Leading to Strange Poisonous Fish
People in Japan pay good money to eat the deadly pufferfish. There, the food is called fugu. The fish can cost more than $100 a kilogram. Eating fugu is especially popular now, during the winter holiday season.
But in the last few years, the fugu market has seen a change. The part of the ocean where pufferfish live is warming quickly. In answer, pufferfish are traveling north to find cooler water. Along the way, new kinds of poisonous fish are being created.
These pufferfish hybrids worry government officials. They are afraid people will accidentally eat them and die. The Japanese government has ordered fishermen and fish traders to throw away any hybrids that they catch.
Some industry workers strongly object to the order. They note that hybrids have poison in the same areas as regular pufferfish. Trained cooks and fish butchers know how to remove the areas that contain the poison. Usually the poison is in the fish's liver and reproductive organs, or sometimes the skin or muscle.
Naoto Itou leads a seafood-processing company in the city of Shimonoseki. He disagrees with the government's rule to throw away pufferfish hybrids. "But we have to follow the rules," he says, "because if there's any problems it leads to hysteria."
The Japanese take pufferfish danger seriously. A supermarket in western Japan once accidentally sold some pufferfish that had not had their poisonous livers removed. The town used its missile alert system to warn residents.
The danger linked to the fish may be one reason for its popularity. One man who fishes for pleasure said, "Some people like it when they feel a bit of tingling on their lips."
A high-end fish seller adds that the fish tastes good. But the seller, Koichi Kushida, notes that pufferfish hybrids are a concern. As more hybrids appear in the market, Kushida checks all the fish himself.
"When we hand it to our customers, we have to be sure it's absolutely safe," he says. "We can't have any problems."
But in truth, even experienced fish handlers and scientists cannot always identify the hybrids. The one certainty is that the hybrid population is increasing. And this rise of mixed pufferfish is another example of the effects climate change is having on sea creatures.
I'm Kelly Jean Kelly.
1.sea creatures 海洋生物
I've mainly searched for fossils and deep sea creatures.
2.alert system 警报系统
The country should have a better job alert system to help students choose their major in college.
3.Climate Change 气候变化
Carbon emissions exacerbate the global climate change problem.
4.take sth seriously 重视；认真对待
Scientists and doctors have begun to take seriously the risk of depression in children.
5.The Japanese government has ordered fishermen and fish traders to throw away any hybrids that they catch.
throw away 扔掉；丢弃
I'm not advising you to throw away your makeup or forget about your appearance.
I think I'll throw away these newspapers.
6.Along the way, new kinds of poisonous fish are being created.
Along the way 沿途；一路上
The steamer calls at several ports along the way.
This bus makes no stops along the way.
日本人会不惜重金吃一种致命的河豚鱼 。在日本，这种食物名为fugu(河豚) 。这种鱼每公斤售价超过100美元 。在冬季假期期间，吃河豚十分受欢迎 。
但在过去几年，河豚市场发生了变化 。海洋中河豚生活的地方正在迅速变暖 。因此，河豚溯流北上寻找更凉爽的水域 。而在迁徙途中，出现了新的有毒鱼类 。
这些杂交河豚让政府官员十分担心 。他们担心人们不小心食用这些鱼类丧命 。日本政府已经命令渔民和鱼类贸易商扔掉捕获的所有杂交鱼类 。
一些工业工人强烈反对这项命令 。他们指出，杂交河豚的有毒部位与普通河豚无异 。有经验的厨师和杀鱼师傅知道如何清除有毒素区域 。通常毒素存在于鱼的肝脏和生殖器官中，有时也存在于鱼的皮肤或肌肉内 。
内藤一郎在下关市经营着一家海产品加工公司 。他不同意政府扔掉杂交河豚的规定 。“但我们必须遵纪守法，”他说，“因为一旦出现任何问题，就会导致歇斯底里的症状 。”
日本人十分重视河豚的危险性 。日本西部一家超市曾不小心出售了一些未去除有毒肝脏的河豚鱼 。该镇通过导弹警报系统向居民发出警告 。
与这种鱼有关危险性可能是它受欢迎的原因之一 。一个以钓鱼为乐的人说:“有些人喜欢嘴唇些许刺痛的感觉 。”
一位销售高端鱼类的商家补充说，这种鱼味道鲜美 。但卖家川岛国一指出，杂交河豚的形势令人担忧 。随着更多的杂交品种上市，国一先生亲自检查了所有鱼类 。
他表示:“当我们把鱼卖给顾客时，必须确保商品是绝对安全的 。”“我们不能出现任何问题 。”
但事实上，即使经验丰富的鱼类饲养员和科学家也难以识别出杂交河豚的品种 。可以肯定的一点是，杂交种群正在增加 。这种杂交河豚的出现是气候变化对海洋生物影响的另一项佐证 。