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NOAA Study Gets Estimate of Annual Catch for Near-Shore Fisheries

Jhana Young
Conservation International

Conservationists and researchers now have an estimation of how much fish is being caught from Hawaii’s near-shore reefs.

State and federal agencies monitor the catch of the local commercial fishing industry – and their estimates are getting more accurate every year.

But figuring the annual catch of near-shore non-commercial fishing has always been difficult – because residents have easy access to the ocean, where no licenses are required.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration partnered with the University of Hawaii at Manoa and Conservation International – to find out how much near-shore reef fish are caught every year on each island.

This study is part of a larger project examining Hawaii’s seafood supply chain.

Kaylyn McCoy is a Research Coordinator with NOAA and lead author of the study.

She says they used data from several sources and called participating individuals to get details of their trips.

Credit Eva Schemmel / National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Conservation International

McCoy says they estimate that from 2004 to 2014 – an average of 2-million pounds of fish were caught annually statewide.

She adds that knowing this will help develop a sustainable management plan for near-shore fisheries.

More information can be found here: https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/science-blog/how-many-fish-are-being-caught-reefs-near-shores-hawaii

Casey Harlow was an HPR reporter and occasionally filled in as local host of Morning Edition and All Things Considered.
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