“Finding Dory” might get a whole lot easier if all you have to do is look in your home aquarium. In an effort to keep fish and film fans from raiding wild habitats, researchers in Florida have figured out a way to breed the blue tang — popularized by the Disney character — in tanks for the first time.
A report in Phys.org details the work by University of Florida scientists, who have spent six years learning how to breed the saltwater fish.
The fish in the animated film, which originated with “Finding Nemo” in 2003, is voiced by Ellen DeGeneres and suffers from short-term memory loss. “Finding Dory” has pulled in more than $930 million this summer to make it the biggest success of the year so far.
The “Nemo” clownfish received the same surge in popularity when that film came out. The researchers work may help to alleviate a strain on the species in the wild, while also giving a boost to Florida’s aquaculture industry, which breeds and raises fish for home aquariums, Phys.org reports.
But animal rights activists argue that breeding in captivity just caters to “greedy businesses” and “disrespects animals’ very natural coral reef homes for the sake of all of us.”