New report raises concerns about local fish supplies

Local News

A report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says nearly a dozen Hawaiian reef fish species are being overfished.

Many of them are popular on the dinner table.

Researchers with NOAA’s Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) looked at 27 different species, and 11 of them are likely being overfished.

Those species include ulua, five surgeonfishes, two goatfishes, and three parrotfishes.

Typically, species that live the longest or are highly targeted by fishermen tended to be in poorer condition. For example, kala can live up to 50 years and are a popular target.

In comparison, weke nono, which only live up to six years, are shown to be doing fine.

Surgeonfishes and parrotfishes were the families with the most vulnerable species, while goatfish populations were generally in better condition.

Researchers say aside from being a food source, reef fish hold cultural significance and help boost the economy by attracting tourists.

In the past, lawmakers have tried to limit fishing on uhu (parrotfish), but those efforts failed to become law.Click here for more information and a link to the full report.

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