Saturday, August 13, 2022
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Monday, December 3, 2012
New Aquarium Fish Rules to Maintain Sustainability
By Selected News Articles @ 2:45 AM :: 4752 Views :: Environment

New Aquarium Fish Rules to Maintain Sustainability

by Ron Tubbs

After years of work, the State legislature, DLNR researchers and aquarium fish collectors have nearly completed new rules. December 5th 2012 is one of the last hearings before these proposed rules becomes law. The State legislature mandated the Aquarium Fish collectors work with DLNR researchers in response to complaints over fish population questions. After numerous meetings between DLNR researchers and the aquarium fishermen they agreed to many proposed rules. The 2011 rules draft was the result.

What was already considered to be a sustainable fishery will now be even more conservative. Hawaii's reef fish produce large amounts of baby fry repopulating Hawaii's reefs quickly making small catches of aquarium fish a renewable resource. Each reef fish pair produce 1 to 5 million small fry per spawning and replenish reefs quickly. DLNR aquarium fish stats reported 456,613 aquarium fish were taken by 86 aquarium fishermen statewide in fiscal 2012. One small drop in the bucket of overall fish counts.

In one of the most studied areas West Hawaii, Dr. Bill Walsh studies have shown an actual overall increase in aquarium fish populations.

DLNR Aquatic Biologist Dr. Bill Walsh reports "Due to recent technological advances in coral reef habitat mapping we’re now able to estimate and track the total population sizes of many reef fishes. For example over the past 12 years the West Hawai’i population of yellow tang in the 30’-60’ prime reef habitat has increased by just over 337,000 fish. Similarly kole populations have increased by over 1,019,000 fish. These two species make up 91% of the total West Hawai’i aquarium catch. This is not devastation. There are indeed concerns over some species to be sure but that is what management is for."

By working with researchers, aquarium fish collectors have given in to more regulatory laws to ensure pretty reef fish are here for all ocean users now and in the future. Some opposed to aquarium fish collecting feel fish should not be taken for aquariums and that they are better off in the wild due to poor survivability. The survivability issue too has also been studied.

Studies show aquarium related mortality is very low. The Cesar 2002 study says: “Mortality rates of aquarium fish are low and have gone down considerably since the last survey in 1984. Currently, mortality rates from collection to wholesaler are estimated at 0 to 1 percent. In the wholesalers’ tanks, mortality rates range from close to 0% up to 2%. During shipment, rates range from 0.75% to 2%. This gives a current total of between 1% and 5%, down from a range of 5% to 8% in the early 1980’s (van Poolen and Obara, 1984; estimates of wholesalers and collectors, own study).” Increased aquarium keeping technologies have made reef fish even more survivable in aquariums.

User conflicts continue and Maui activists complain about no more fish. One leading researcher, Dr. Dan Polhemus, pointed out that "in the grand scheme of things, the aquarium take on Maui is literally a drop in the bucket, representing less than 2% of the total mortality of (Maui) reef animals that year. This serves to point out that undue focus and hyperbole about aquarium collecting and its impact on the reefs is dangerously shortsighted and counterproductive."

If you wish to attend the meeting it will be held at 6:00 pm Wed, Dec 5, 2012 in the Waimalu Elementary School cafeteria, 98-825 Moanalua Rd, Pearl City.



TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


808 Silent Majority

ACA Signups Hawaii

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Back da Blue Hawaii

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Life Alliance

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together



Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

July 4 in Hawaii

Kakaako Cares

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

ReRoute the Rail

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii