Finfish are “true” fish, so unlike shellfish, jellyfish or starfish, these are animals with backbones, gills, and, of course, fins. This is a large category that includes salmon, for example, or tilapia. Finfish play an important role in the larger aquatic and marine food web as both predator and prey, fueling and influencing complex energy and carbon exchanges that support biodiversity, abundance, and ecosystem resilience – from the health of coral reefs, to the availability of deepwater oxygen.
Finfish aquaculture, or fish farming, can take place in coastal ocean waters, lakes, rivers, and ponds, as well as within tanks on land. Some farmed species even start off in tanks and are moved to ponds or floating pens in the natural environment for further growth until harvest.