Wow...I really thought more people on this board would reply in the negative :shock:
I see eugenics of any kind (which essentially is exactly what is practiced in this hobby, at least in this instance) to be within the same ballpark. That is why I did not forgo the reference. Of course, human bias is going to skew that example to include other connotations (which are explicitly applied by the reader).
I feel that the manipulation of fish characteristics in any way in this regard is irresponsible and disrespectful. Of course you're going to get mutations, but that is the very device by which evolution works. Do we mean to apply aesthetic value as a selective stimulus? In my opinion, that goes against the very reason why
we keep fish to begin with. Of course, I only know why exactly I myself keep fish, so I can't assume that you all believe in similar values.
I posted this on another board, so I will repost it here:
To begin with, how can you say if a certain fish's physiology "isn't really altered" ["these manipulations do not distort the fish's basic body plan"] after selective breeding? A hobbyist who wishes to perpetuate a given morph selects only fish that appear to exhibit the desirable characteristic for further breeding. He does not typically take a microscope and determine whether or not any other minor or not-so-minor detail has been altered, internally or otherwise.
I have as much a problem with dog breeds and garden-bred flower morphs as I do with selectively-bred fishes. I guess I'm sort of a hippie
I believe culling is wrong in any situation. I do not euthanize my Endler's that come out hunchbacked, they typically die on their own. The only instances in which I euthanize a fish is if it is half-eaten or dying of starvation.
Anyway, it's here to stay, so I suppose there's really no point in arguing about it