Trade in pegasid fishes (sea moths), primarily for traditional Chinese medicine
Pegasid fishes (sea moths) have only entered the arsenal of traditional Chinese medicine within the past few decades, but are now used in southern China and Hong Kong to treat respiratory ailments and cancers. Brief trade surveys suggest that millions of individuals of two pegasid species are used each year, and that they cost relatively little compared with other ingredients. Most pegasids are apparently a bycatch of trawl fishing, which has recently intensified near China. Trade and use of these fishes is expanding – they have been sought in the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam – and should be monitored, particularly because the biology of pegasids makes these fishes vulnerable to exploitation.
Vincent, A.C.J. (1997). Trade in pegasid fishes (sea moths), primarily for traditional Chinese medicine. Oryx 31(3):199-208. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1365-3008.1997.d01-12.x