Scientists in the Netherlands have made history after successfully applying contraception to a fish species for the first time.
In the study, researchers from Royal Burgers’ Zoo in Arnhem gave the contraceptive implant to a female spotted eagle ray, after being faced with a strange situation.
Zookeepers found that the genetic material of two female spotted eagle rays threatened to dominate the European population.
To prevent this from happening, the researchers moved one of the fish to another aquarium, while the other had a birth control implant successfully inserted in her left pectoral fin.
This isn’t the first time that scientists have attempted to give fish contraceptives.
In a previous study, researchers attempted to insert a birth control implant in two female river stingrays, but were unsuccessful.
A spokesperson for Royal Burgers’ Zoo, said: “This breakthrough has far-reaching consequences for the European breeding programmes of various fish species.
“With this extra method of population management, the programmes can be managed in an even more targeted way.”