[The following is a release by The Coral Reef Aquarium Fisheries]
Just last week, Hawaii’s Circuit Court Judge Jeffrey Crabtree lifted an injunction on marine aquarium fish collection in West Hawaii that had been in place since 2018. This paved the way for the State’s fisheries management agency, the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), to begin re-issuing permits to resume the fishery in this locale.
But right on the heels of that, Hawaii State Senators Mike Gabbard and Karl Rhoads introduced Senate Bill 505, seeking to “prohibit the harvesting of aquatic life for commercial aquarium purposes, regardless of the method of collection.” If passed, this bill would impose a statewide ban. It will be introduced for public comment and decision making THIS FRIDAY.
Do you have knowledge of, or experience with, aquarium fish coming from Hawaii? What are your thoughts on whether or not Hawaii’s aquarium fishery should resume? Let your voice be heard. Click on the button below to submit your written testimony. Your statement can be short, concise, and simple. You can speak from your experiences, you can speak from the science. For background, you can follow the links below for an overview of Hawaii’s marine aquarium fishery when it was in operation, and the judicial proceedings that occurred in recent years to shut it down. Your testimony must be received by THIS Thursday, February 9th, at 7pm Eastern Time in order to be considered.
For More Information on Hawaii’s Aquarium Fishery:
Renowned Aquarium Biologist Dr. Bruce Carson produced this video on Hawaii’s aquarium fishery, offering a rich overview of its operation and the science behind it, featuring interviews from aquatic resource management experts at Hawaii’s DLNR and NOAA.
The Coral Reef Aquarium Fisheries Campaign published this blog post of judicial proceedings dating back to 2012 that sought to ban West Hawaii’s aquarium fishery. Ultimately, they were successful, until now. The future of Hawaii’s aquarium fishery hangs in the balance. Your voice can make a difference.