pt. I. Introduction -- ch. 1. Fish biodiversity and why it should matter -- pt. II. Imperiled fishes : taxonomy, geography, and vulnerability -- ch. 2. Roll call I : a taxonomic perspective -- ch. 3. Roll call II : a geopolitical perspective -- ch. 4. Characteristics of vulnerable species and correlates of imperilment -- pt. III. Indirect causes of decline : habitat, water, and introductions -- ch. 5. Habitat modification and loss -- ch. 6. Dams, impoundments, and other hydrological alterations -- ch. 7. Degraded water quality -- ch. 8. Alien species I : case histories, mechanisms, and levels of impact -- ch. 9. Alien species II : understanding the process, minimizing the impact -- pt. IV. Direct causes of decline : fishes as commodities -- ch. 10. Fishes versus fisheries I : overfishing -- ch. 11. Fishes versus fisheries II : behavior, life history evolution, and ecosystems -- ch. 12. Coral reefs, fishes, and fisheries : exploitation in fragile ecosystems -- ch. 13. The trade in live fishes -- ch. 14. The promise of aquaculture and hatcheries -- pt. V. Asking hard questions, sorting out answers -- ch. 15. The ethics of exploitation and intervention : do we have the right? -- ch. 16. Future perspectives : beyond gloom and doom? -- Appendix. Probable fish extinctions.