What’s all the fuss about Dory?
This past week I came across an unfamiliar term on the Internet, the Finding Nemo Effect, that caught my attention.
The Huffington Post shared, “While that touching story [of “Finding Nemo”] should’ve inspired audiences to leave wild fish in the ocean where they belong, according to researchers, it did quite the opposite.” After the film’s release, something even Disney didn’t anticipate was that the commercial sale of clownfish skyrocketed (some estimate an increase of 40%).
While clownfish (Nemo) have been successfully bread in captivity, the blue tang (Dory) has not been so successful. Scientists and conservationists are concerned that as demand for blue tangs go up, so will the harvesting of these delicate fish from the wild, adversely affecting an already fragile coral ecosystem.
And blue tangs don’t last long in captivity.
Find Dory, don’t buy her.
Fans are petitioning Disney to do what they can to encourage viewers to find Dory but not to buy her.
On Disney’s website, they have a section for the film called “Learning with Mr. Ray,” which includes information about responsible fish ownership and an educator’s guide. You can find these resources here.
So this is my plea.
Leave Dory where she belongs: in the wild.
While I don’t fault Disney for making cute films like “Finding Nemo” and “Finding Dory,” knowing what the consequences of consumer reaction will be after what happened with Nemo, I hope Disney will be more proactive with their outreach efforts to save Dory.