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11 Year old Quinn Abrigo & Broom Fish



Trophy or Lomi O‘io Bonefish

If you recover a tagged o‘io call 265-4962 Be prepared to provide the following critical information: 1. Your name, address, and telephone number. 2. Capture date, island, and fishing location. 3. Tag number. 4. Fork length – measure from tip of the nose to “V” in the tail. 5. There are 2 species - Sharp Jaw Albula virgata which has a bright green/yellow dot under the pectoral fins, and Round Jaw Albula glossodonta has no green/yellow dot.


In return for your valuable information, you will receive a free special edition t-shirt featuring original artwork (seen above) by artist and fisherman Mike Sakamoto.

For More Information 2


150 Hamakua Dr. PBN# 430 Kailua, HI 96734

Ph: 808 265-4962 Web: ISSUE FOURTEEN 2013




28 / WHAT IS IT?
















Publisher Pacific Islands Fisheries Group

Hawaii’s Premiere Alaska Fishing Destinations • Anchor Point Lodge • Shelter Lodge

Editor Pacific Islands Fisheries Group Design Darin H. Isobe > Art Director Director of Marketing + Advertising Marc Inouye Advertising Suzanne Eugenio


Contributing Writers Makani Christensen, John Clark, Neil Kanemoto, Kurt Kawamoto, Brian Kimata, Nolan Laramore, Lawai‘a Editorial Board, Nashly Dawn Leslie, Kimi Makaiau, Mark Mitsuyasu, Roy N. Morioka, Paulo, Cheyne Settlemire, Clay Tam, Ed Watamura and Jake Yago

Alaska Reel Adventure! Reservations & Info (808) 551-1993 $3.95


11 Year old Quinn Abrigo & Broom


ON THE COVER: 11 year old Quinn Abrigo with his dinner (file fish) shot with a three prong in Haleiwa. Photo by Lanet Abrigo ISSUE FOURTEEN 2013


Letters and Comments email: Salmon • Halibut • Black Cod • Rockfish Dungeness Crab • Alaskan Spot Shrimp

Lawai‘a Magazine Every attempt is made to publish Lawai‘a 4 times a year. Printed by DMS Hong Kong.



SHARE THE OCEAN I recall growing up fishing in Kawaihae Harbor at a place we used to call Mrs. Roth’s pier. It was a mixed use pier with commercial tour and dive boats, commercial fishing vessels, and charter and commercial utility vessels. It was part of a vibrant thriving marine community where everyone respected each other and got along. We would fish at the end of the pier (the best spot) and when the tropical fish collectors pulled up to unload their equipment, we would clear our buckets and poles out of the way, help them tie up, and then move back into the spot when they pulled away from the dock. Then the dive boat catamaran would pull up and we would repeat the process. The difference between yesterday and today? Back then, everyone got along. There was always mutual respect between the different groups and we shared the space. Nowadays it’s a different story. Dive tours have their own private Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to conduct commercial operations in. The tropical fish collectors are now prohibited from several types of areas, including Marine Life Conservation Districts (MLCDs) and Fisheries Management Areas (FMAs). Even fishermen prevent others from fishing by being inconsiderate, encroaching on other’s spots or simply not sharing the area. This becomes more of an issue now, given the growing population, the shrinking areas available or even open or legally accessible to fish, coupled with the increased demand by other ocean recreation and commercial activities. Nearshore fishermen face increased amounts of water traffic in the form of tourists, paddle boarders, wind surfers, sail boarders, swimmers, kayak tours, kayak fishermen, sporting events, and even protected species, including whales, turtles and monk seals. Even onshore recreation activities in public areas or whole communities have been restricted or constrained by unregulated commercial activities or protected species concerns/issues. Conflicts also arise between fishermen themselves – shoreline guys vs. the net fishermen, paddle-out fishermen vs. the traditional shorecasters and even boaters. Farther offshore, bottomfishermen face a shrinking fishing area due to regulations (BRFAs) and trollers need to be aware of when the Humpbacks arrive for their calving season. Even farther out at the buoys, the traditional trollers and palu-ahi fishermen are now sharing

space with kayakers, jet ski fishermen, blue-water hunters (divers), and greenstick fishermen. And then we face cultural issues. Each new influx of different ethnic groups brings their own cultural backgrounds, attitudes, and practices. It may take a generation or more before these new fishermen become educated in the local socially acceptable and legal fishing practices. It can be difficult for many that have lived here all their lives as attitudes and practices about our views of the ocean and its resources continually evolve. Translate this to fisheries management terms and this has related in the past to issues over laynets, ogo-harvesting, night diving and other practices. The ocean is a finite resource that is indeed shrinking as we face increased competition for space and deal with new social issues that come with our State’s multicultural “open arms.” We encourage everyone to always remember that we live in the melting pot of the Pacific and that on an island every one of our ancestors was once an outsider. We must never forget the Aloha Spirit and keep reminding ourselves as fishermen and stewards of the environment that we must become the ambassadors of Aloha and not only teach others to share the ocean and be tolerant of other cultures, but to practice what we preach as well. To talk the talk we must also be prepared to walk the walk. We are all in this together. Lawaia Editorial Board



Louis Carreira 53.2 & 15 lb Ulua

Bobby Galchutt ohana Yellow Fin Tuna

Tracy, Jason, Cameron, and Leah. (L-R) Ahi

Cj Dias Samoan Crab Travis Nitta Kaku

Joseph Weigert 30lb Kagami

Braden Vendiola 10.2 lbs Kagami

Eddie Carvalho 9.4 lb Omilu (barbless)

Natasha Petersen Omilu Cameron Cintron Weke


Robert Shibukawa 80.2 lb Ulua

Email digital photos as jpg files. Please take pics at your highest setting possible. Email jpg photos to: Include all info please. All pics sent become the property of Lawai‘a Magazine.

Troy Haspe 55 lb Ulua (barbless)



Stephen Arita 12 lb ulua



An Open Letter Aloha Mr. Borg: I am sending this via email and not as an editorial as I would not be able to convey my thoughts in fewer words. Re: Your August 10, 2013 Article: Off the menu - Decades-old dishes served at Hawaii restaurants

offer a unique way to track declining fish counts in the Pacific. Local demographics and peoples tastes have changed over time and as such menu items have correspondingly changed. However, a stroll though Chinatown fish markets will find many reef species no longer considered popular menu items being sold and bought by locals. Perhaps pricing at restaurants may be another factor as the preparation of reef species is more labor intensive and fresh island caught preportioned filets of pelagic species are readily available for restaurants today. Other changes that have occurred over the years include the loss of fish pond production, the introduction of non-native and invasive species, a unique fishery created by the long range NWHI fisheries that is now gone because of closure and others such as the highly regulated net fishery. Additionally, fish born illnesses such as ciguatera have caused the absence of jacks (ulua, kahala and other reef fish) in our markets and the growing habitat loss due to shoreline development, runoff, sewage, competing ocean uses, etc. have all contributed to the changing near shore ecosystem and species presence. In the 50’s and early 60’s one would have seen the many sampans in Kewalo Basin that my father and his father’s generation used to fish full-time for nearshore species. They would stay out for days

Lawai‘a- Gear Guys Visit the following stores to get your fishing supplies and next issue of Lawa‘a Magazine. BIG ISLAND/HAWAII J. Hara Store 17-343 Volcano Hwy. Kurtistown, HI 96760 808-966-5462

West Maui Sports & Fishing Supply 843 Wainee Street #F3 Lahaina, HI 96761 808-661-6252

Five Oceans Seven Seas 24 Sand Island Road #29 Honolulu, HI 96819 808-843-8111

S. Tokunaga Store Inc. 26 Hoku Street Hilo, HI 96720 808-935-6935

MOLOKAI Molokai General Store 301 Ala Malama Kaunakakai, HI 96748 808-553-3569

Hana Pa’a Fishing Co. 1733 Dillingham Blvd. Honolulu, HI 96819 808-845-1865

KAUAI Lihue Fishing Supply 2985 Kalena St. Lihue, HI 96766 808-245-4930

OAHU Brian’s Fishing Supply 1236 S. King St. Honolulu, HI 96814 808-596-8344

MAUI Maui Sporting Goods 92 Market Street Wailuku, HI 96793 808-244-0011 New Maui Fishing Supply 1823 Wells Street #4 Wailuku, HI 96793 808-244-3449

Charley’s Fishing Supply, Inc. 670 Auahi St., #A10 Honolulu, HI 96813 808-528-7474 Ewa Beach Buy & Sell 91-775 C Papipi Road Ewa Beach, HI 96706 808-689-6368

Nanko’s Fishing Supply 46-003 Alaloa St. Kaneohe, HI 96744 808-247-0938 Nervous Water Fly Fishers 3434 Waialae Ave. Honolulu, HI 96816 808-734-7359

He’eia Kea Pier 46-499 Kamehameha Hwy. Kaneohe, HI 96744 808-235-2192

POP Fishing & Marine 1133 North Nimitz Hwy. Honolulu, HI 96817 808-537-2905

Kaya’s Fishing Supply 901 Kekaulike St. Honolulu, HI 96817 808-538-1578

Sawada Store 132 N. Cane Street Wahiawa, HI 96786 808-622-4861

Maui Sporting Goods 851 Kapahulu Ave. Honolulu, HI 96816 808-735-3897

Waipahu Bicycle & Sporting Goods 94-320 Waipahu Depot Street Waipahu, HI 96797 808-671-4091

McCully Bicycle & Sporting Goods 2124 S. King St. Honolulu, HI 96826 808-955-6329

Westside Dive & Tackle 94-615 Kupuohi Street #103 Waipahu, HI 96797 808-228-2295

at a time to make a load, but they are now gone and replaced by a day trip trailer boat fleet. The near shore fishermen of today can no longer afford to fish full-time and as a result, supplement their fulltime job with their part-time fishing that produces the reef fish in the markets today. Globalization has also stimulated the introduction of imports (Atlantic salmon, dungeness crabs,Patagonian toothfish, cod, shrimp, scallops, surimi for fish cake, etc.) and other changes such as banning the sale of turtles, certain crustaceans, and now shark fins have and will affect menus in the future. One can attribute all of the above to the changes in menus but to imply that declining fish counts can be ascertained by referencing past menus is a stretch at best. The authors of the paper have failed to present an inclusive assessment of the factors that may have contributed to the changes in our local menus over time. I worry when scientists forget to detail the “science” and fail to include the causal facts and factors BEFORE developing conclusions and publishing such work. Science must not be conducted in sound bites, but rather conducted comprehensively. I hope that there can be such a paradigm shift in the scientific community with increased dialog and collaboration between scientists to verify and validate their analysis and conclusions before presenting to the public an “assumption” as a scientific assertion. I also worry when reporters also fail to verify, investigate and ground truth the assumptions BEFORE printing such an ill-considered piece especially on the front page. Mahalo, A Fisherman Seeking the BEST Available and Verified Science for dissemination to our public.

Roy N. Morioka Waialae-Iki, Maunalua Bay, Oahu, HI Cc: Kyle Van Houtan - PIFSC (Author of the Report) Samuel G.Pooley, Phd. – Director, PIFSC Michael Seki, Phd. - Vice Director - PIFSC Frank Bridgewater - Editor The Honolulu Star Advertiser




ISSUE FOURTEEN 2013 4/29/12 10:14 AM


From the Deck BY GARY BEALS

Basic Seamanship - 1 One of the most basic things a boater should know while operating a vessel on the open sea is how to avoid running into another boat. The U.S. Coast Guard, Rules of the Road, will give you a detailed explanation of what to do under specific conditions. See the following website: ( But the common sense rule is that if you are on a collision course with another vessel which is dead ahead, each vessel should bear (turn) to their starboard (right). This is a situation that is a common occurrence at the State FADs and if the captain follows the common sense rule, everyone will have a good day.

Basic Nautical Terms – 1 Starboard: The right side of the boat or towards the right-hand side of a vessel facing forward. Denoted with a green light at night. Derived from the old steering oar or steerboard which preceded the invention of the rudder.

Basic Marlinspike Seamanship – 1 One of the most useful knots a mariner can learn is the ‘Bowline’. This knot may be used for many different situations and, if tied correctly, it won’t slip. A bowline on the end of a line makes a good ‘temporary’ eye in the end of a line. A bowline in the end of two lines may be used to tie the lines together. Use the illustrations below to learn the knot before you need to use the bowline.





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As the parking lot filled, a sea of bamboo poles started to take form in front of the briefing tent. Entrants visited the NOAA Barbless Circle Hook

uiii! You going check out the keiki fishing tournament

booth that featured free barbless circle hooks and information about

at the pier Saturday?” That was the buzz around town

avoiding and reporting sea turtle interactions. At 9:00 a.m. Kailana Ritte-

leading up to the 3rd annual Moloka‘i Keiki Fishing

Kamara opened the event with a pule and Kawela provided participants

Tournament held on June 30, 2013. Folks showed up

instructions about the start and stop fishing time, boundaries on where

with their ohana to register for this popular event at 8:00 a.m. Saturday

they could fish, weigh-in procedures and a safety briefing. At 9:30 a.m.

morning. Tournament organizers Jr. and Kawela Kalawe and Shane

the start fishing horn sounded and everyone picked up their bait packs,

Sumarnap expected this year’s event to draw a larger than usual crowd

which consisted of cut squid and fish dough, and were off to the water.

being that it was held at the Kaunakakai Pier. What they didn’t expect was

Like ‘a‘ama crabs, the kids scampered along the breakwater for just the

that it would double the 150 participants they had at last year’s event. Jr.

right spot and wove their way into position among the moored boats

reported that “This year we had over 300 participants.” Each participant

tied to the wharf.

received a hand cut bamboo pole, bait and bucket. The Junior category,

For two hours everyone watched their bamboo tips while they

which was new for 2013, allowed older entrants to use rod and reel gear.

changed bait, untangled lines and fished hard! Being a catch and release






tournament, twelve student volunteers from the Fisheries and Marine Resource Management summer high school program sponsored by the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council in partnership with Moanalua High School helped to run bucketed fish over to the weigh station before they were released back to fight another day. Fishing was hard at times with brutal Kaunakakai winds picking up in the late morning, forcing windward facing fishers to move over the protected leeward side of the pier. At 11:30 the horn sounded to stop fishing! While the weigh masters tallied the totals, participants enjoyed free hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks. A big Mahalo goes out to the all the generous donors for supporting Moloka‘i’s keiki at this event. Tournament entrants also expressed their creative skills by participating in the gyotaku fish printing activity where they created works-of-art on free shirts provided by the Fishery Council. Popular designs this year were the brightly colored menpachi and moi prints. In the end, all the keiki walked away winners and took home special treats and prizes such as lures, fishing supplies and gear, not to mention a custom gyotaku print to commemorate an awesome day of fishing and fun.





s t n e m a n r u To

ON APRIL 20, 2013, THE FIRST ROI, TAAPE, AND TOAU (RT2) eradication event was held in West Hawaii on the Big Island. These three species that were introduced to Hawaii were the target for this competition. Fifty one individuals formed 17 eradication teams of three that were allowed to use three-prong, spear guns and other spearfishing equipment. Teams competed in two categories – scuba spear or free diving – which provided an opportunity to assess the effectiveness of using scuba spear gear over free diving. In four hours, from 8:00 a.m. to noon, a total of 643 pounds of RT2 were brought to scale. Roi dominated the mix with 640 lbs landed. Only 3 lbs of Taape were landed and no Toau were caught during the competition. One team was disqualified. The top three teams in the event were – team Upapalu (free divers) with 94.8 lbs, team Eric Haniel Kiely (free divers) with 93.4 lbs, and team Poke Shack (scuba divers) with 93.4 lbs. As part of this event, the University of Hawaii researchers were present to collect scientific information from the fish caught, such as, length, weight, stomach content and tissues samples. Hopefully this information will help better understand how these introduced species are affecting our local fisheries and ecosystem. After the eradication and weigh-in, dive participants and 25 volunteers cleaned up the Honokohau Harbor area from 2:00 -3:00 pm. which was then followed by the presentation awards at 4:00 pm. The harbor clean-up resulted in approximately 1,500 lbs of trash that was fished from the harbor, including old tires, fishing poles, bottles, scrap iron, lead and discarded junk. Mahalo to all the participants, numerous volunteers, generous donations and sponsorship from the Western Pacific Fishery Council that helped to ensure the successful competition of the first


17 teams competed in this event.

RT2 Eradication event.





Total (lbs)

Largest Fish

Mahealani R4D Kingdom of Hawaii Upapalu Justin Roy Sustin Ariel alvin Silver Pearl Eric Haniel Kiley Hemo Scales Jet Ski Poke Shack (Scuba) Da Braddahs Kona 808 Divers Team Keenan Kai holo Pono (Scuba) Bad Spearguns

3.2 18 32.8 94.8 80 6.4 DQ 93.4 59.4 0.8 93.4 27.2 16.8 8.6 71.4 36.8

1.8 3.2 4.2 4.2 4 4.2



4.8 4.8 0.8 4.4 2.8 6.2 2.8 4.2 3.2



Aunty Kwong’s Kitchen

We are OC16’s top-rated show for the second year in a row thanks to you!

Monchong Spring Rolls Ingredients: • 6 monchong fillets cut into even pieces • Salt & pepper to taste • Vegetable oil • 3 tablespoons chopped garlic • 2 tablespoons peeled & chopped ginger

Dedicated to Hawai‘i’s fishing community

• 1/4 cup chopped cilantro or parsley • 1/2 cup sliced scallions • Six sheets of round spring roll rice paper Hoisin lime sauce: • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce • 1/4 cup orange juice • 1 lime, juiced • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced Directions: Season both sides of monchong pieces with salt and pepper and set aside. Heat oil in a saute pan and saute the garlic and ginger until softened, but not browned; then add cilantro or parsley and green onion, and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Carefully moisten 1 piece of rice paper in warm water for about 30 seconds until softened. Then, spread out on a cutting board and lightly pat dry with a paper towel. Put 1 heaping tablespoon of the ginger-garlic-herb mixture on the center of the rice paper and spread it around a bit, so that it will evenly cover the surface of a piece of monchong. Place monchong on top, and tightly fold ends of the rice paper up and around the monchong to make a package, like you’re making a burrito. Repeat with all pieces and place bundles aside. Set in the refrigerator for at least 5 minutes.

Place all ingredients for the hoisin lime sauce in a liquid measuring cup or bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Stir well. Drizzle over the monchong bundles and garnish with chopped cilantro.

Heat a large skillet with vegetable oil. Once the oil is hot, add bundles to the pan, sealed side down, and brown for about 2 minutes on each side. Be careful not to rip the delicate rice paper.

TIP: Resist the urge to over-cook the monchong, or it might dry out. Remember, the pieces of monchong are small, and continue to cook through carry-over cooking.





Shoreline Tech B Y B R I A N K I M ATA

Question: I see more and more rods in “ high modulus” graphite, even ulua rods. What is high modulus graphite and why is it better? Answer:

That’s a great question! But, before I can

answer that, we need to know a little about graphite rods in

a rig and retrieve fish easier. While a higher modulus material can

too advanced for its application. As more and more research is

yield great benefits, one can have too much of a good thing. Like

conducted, this fiber or perhaps something completely different

many other things that surround us, anything stiffer is usually more

may be at the pinnacle of performance.

brittle. Graphite is no exception. Extremely high modulus graphite is

So, is it worth it? My rule of thumb has always been to buy the

a wonderful material. It is light with a fantastic deflection to weight

best gear within your budget. If you can afford it, high modulus

ratio. But, as graphite moves up the “stiffometer” scale, it becomes

graphite will give you a lot of bang for your buck!

more brittle and less durable. Modern rod manufacturers balance the

general. Graphite has pretty much replaced fiberglass as the

use of the high modulus graphite material with their knowledge and

predominate rod building material. But why the change? Didn’t

computer aided designs to create a strong, light product that will last

fiberglass make great rods? Well, yes it did and I can remember

for years. While these higher performing rods cost more, prices for

some great rods I have made from it. While fiberglass is still in

them have dropped as these materials become more mainstream and

use today, graphite has replaced the glass rod because of its

compete more strongly with their standardized versions.

enhanced performance.

In the quest for a lighter, stiffer rod, manufacturers are constantly

First introducing it in 1973, the Fenwick rod company changed

testing new materials. Boron, once considered the scion to graphite,

the way we fish today with the world’s first all graphite fishing

is no longer on the market. Boron, a material even stiffer than

rod. Although more expensive than fiberglass, graphite is

graphite, lost its appeal as early models suffered breakage issues.

lighter and more sensitive. Graphite accomplishes this because

The problem was that the resins used to bond graphite couldn’t bond

graphite fibers are stiffer than glass. Because they are stiffer,

boron properly and durability suffered. It was, in effect, a material

less material is needed to create a rod with the desired strength. This is largely why graphite rods are lighter than their glass counterparts. Graphite fibers are also much thinner than glass, providing a much more dense structure. This feature of graphite yields some great benefits. Graphite rebounds more quickly than fiberglass, providing superior casting qualities. Graphite also dampens movement more quickly as well, something you probably noticed at the end of your cast or while working your


favorite lure. If you’re playing a sizable fish, you may have also noticed that graphite has more lifting power as a graphite rod resists being flexed more that fiberglass ones. Now that you are familiar with graphite’s exceptional

is a ratio, expressed in millions of pounds per square inch. It is the

properties, let’s discuss the original question at hand,

measure of force per area and is used to compare the stiffness

the difference between your graphite rod and

to weight ratio of the material itself. This is where a higher

it’s more expensive counterpart created in a

modulus rod shines. The higher the modulus of the graphite,

high modulus material. Your question can be

the more energy it can store and release. Because of this, a high

answered by defining what modulus is. Modulus

modulus rod can be lighter and yet have the potential to cast

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What’s that floating over there? Is that an eel?

Diving in the water along the net with only a flashlight, gloves, and a prayer for protection, we helped set it over all rocks and

It was a beautiful morning with hardly a hint of a breeze. Flat seas and bright sun under voggy skies -

obstructions. In the beams of our dive lights there were a lot

sunburn weather as we like to call it. This was the first time in a couple of months that we were able to go

of these skinny eels just swimming along the bottom with the

fishing. April was coming to a close and the end of the traditional winter bottomfish season was coming

weke and everything else herded by the advancing net. We got

up fast. Last chance to catch some red fish before the ahi start showing up for the summer. Our main

a lot of them that night. Since then, I have seen them caught

objective for the day was to catch one nice red fish, an onaga, to give to Captain Ed’s friend who had just

at Bamboo Ridge by fishermen casting for the annual winter

been diagnosed with inoperable cancer. I have heard from small kid time that this is an old time Japanese

run of sharp jawed oio. Friends said they caught them in many

tradition. This gifting of a red fish is an interwoven part of our local culture for many of us. A whole red

different places around Oahu. I’m sure this happens on all our

fish, for a whole life and good luck, is an adopted tradition that many local fishermen of all races and ages

islands. Interestingly the deepwater bottomfish fishermen also

continue to faithfully perpetuate and honor.

report catching them. The reported catches were from water 60-

Finally the GPS said we’re here. The Furuno showed a few blue dots but nothing much. Oh well, since we’re here we gotta try. First drop of the day in 152 fathoms, no palu, 7 hooks, 4 lb lead. Hit the bottom

70 fathoms in depth while fishing for opakapaka at night. These eels seem to be everywhere that an ulua would or could go.

f lying gurnards

These reports of catches and sightings fit in with the

John King posted the photo on the left on 808Shorecaster’s

information found in John E. Randall’s Reef and Shore Fishes

Facebook page, mentioning that these little fish came out of the

and anticipation began. When the swivel finally reached the surface I could see a couple of fish on the

of the Hawaiian Islands, page 55. The distribution of this eel is

stomach of an ahi and asking what they were. There were a lot

line below. Great, they look red. One, two, “Hey Ed, looks like got 2 and maybe one more”. Three, four, then

described as “known only from the Hawaiian Islands” so it is

responses and quite a few knowledgeable fishermen recognized

a surprise on the bottom hook, five. Niiice. Four good onaga and a nice sized ehu on the bottom hook.

truly home grown. It buries in the sand during the day and has a

them as baby flying gurnards.

Mission accomplished on the first drop. The gods must be smiling on us today. It was all gravy now. The

reported depth distribution of 2-490 meters (6.5-1,608 feet). It is

We confirmed with NOAA’s Bob Humphries that it was

a small species growing to perhaps 21 inches. The easiest way to

indeed what they were. Bob responded, “Yes, these are

whales were jumping all around us enjoying the calm morning.

identify this species is to look at the head, just back of the eye,

dactylopterids, I don’t know what the Hawaiian name is but

I’d like to think that they were happy for us as well. The fish bit

for 2 brown bars, each preceded by a pale bar. The body color is

the mainland name is “flying gurnards”. As adults they tend

for an hour or so until they shut down or moved out of the area.

translucent brownish with silvery/iridescent reflections along its

to hang out on the reef bottom and have large pectoral fins

Such is fishing. Right place, right time, and perhaps today the

sides. The silver/iridescent coloration is easily visible especially

that they usually keep tucked into their body.

right purpose.

while it is alive. Look for a silver horizontal line above a wider

What you have is the pelagic stage of these guys...they get

silver streak along the sides of the body. There is also a blackish

up to 3 or 4 cm in length during the pelagic stage before

edge on the dorsal and anal fin. The teeth are small.

they recruit back to the reef environment. Cool critters...

and nothing…then the welcomed feeling of a pulsing on the line. Feels like an onaga, then another bite and soon there is the welcome feeling of multiple fish on the line. I’m coming up now! The eternal wait

Looking around for any floating fish, which happens from time to time when bottomfishing, we saw an interesting shape bobbing almost right next to the boat and had to go investigate. Scooping

If you are an ulua fisherman you have probably caught

sometimes they are mistaken for larval stage marlin. I’ve

it up revealed that it was a white eel or tohe look alike that I had

and used these eels as bait before. Did you know that it was

seen before but not under these circumstances and definitely not

the tohe’s smaller cousin? Or maybe it was one of the other 3

A few days later, Capt. Clay Ching of Molokai also sent

out here. Interestingly, it was freshly dead, judging by its clear

species of conger eels that live in our Hawaiian waters. From

the photo on the right of the same fish that he found in the

eyes and tail section being bitten off. Was this a regurgitation

fisherman’s stories, they all make excellent ulua bait.

stomach of a shibi which he caught at a buoy.

seen quite a few in aku stomachs over the years.”

from the onagas or ehus that we had been catching or something else? The clean cut and lack of any scratches probably meant that it was not a victim of any bottomfish. The unusual eel was one that I had seen over the years but never personally caught. Being a shorecaster since small kid time, I had heard many fishermen talking about the small white eels they catch from time to time and use for ulua bait with good results. The way they described it to me didn’t quite fit the description of the highly sought, prime ulua bait we know as the tohe or white eel. This was its smaller cousin, the black margin conger (Ariosoma marginatum), that is occasionally caught by shorecasters, usually in sandy areas. My first experience in seeing these was over 30 years ago in my U.H. ichthyology class. Kailua Beach at night doing a beach seine (with a State collecting permit), we set the small meshed seine net a hundred yards out parallel to the shoreline and dragged the net towards shore.



home grown

ulua bait

from dad’s old tackle box

Lawai‘a contributor and PIFG Director, Neil Kanemoto, asked “is the “What Is It” section in Lawai‘a only for unidentified fish species? Or can it

be used for stuff found in your dad’s old tackle box?” Seems Neil came across this unidentified terminal tackle and wanted to know how it was used and what it was used for. Well, Neil, sorry to say that we don’t know what you have there but we may just start up a new column called “Stuff You Pull Out of Your Dad’s Old Tackle Box” or “From the Bottom of That Old Tackle Box” just for you. If any of Lawai‘a’s readers know what Neil found or what it’s used for, please let us know!



Fish Stories

Fish Stories



First Uku


y name is Cheyne Settlemire, and I would like to share

and next thing you know, HANAPA‘A! The fish screamed line and ran

a small picture and story of my boy, Chris Wayte,

into a hole. A few minutes and patience of the fisherman went by

who caught his first uku in his life. Also, as a papio

and the fish started fighting again. Chris eventually brought it up

fisherman who shorecasted and whipped all his life

to the boat and we saw color. He used his Kage spear and landed a

from Big island, he never caught anything bigger than 5lbs. I talked

10 lb uku. This was not only his first uku, but it was also the biggest

him into buying a kayak and bottom fishing off of my dad’s secret

fish he ever landed. We made uku sashimi and also made his first

spots. He liked the idea and instantly got hooked. The first day

gyotaku. He was stoked, and it was a good day on Oahu!

was to teach him the basics of balance on the Scupper Pro kayak.

I have his permission to share this photo and would very much

The next day I took him to one of my dad’s bottom fishing spots. I

like you guys to feature him in the next Lawai‘a magazine. Domo

made him my homemade damashi rig, he caught his own live bait

Arigato Mr. or Mrs. Roboto!

Eddie’s Ono Story


ishing is part of my life in which I enjoy. With my good friend, co-worker and fishing buddy, Kyle Hirayama, we usually fish on his 21 ft Alii Kai. Finally, I decided

Scientific Name: Acanthocybium solandri

to buy my own 18 ft Alii Kai. I picked up my new toy on a Thursday and planned

Hawaiian Name: Ono Malani

to take it out Sunday. While transporting my boat from the mountains of North

Japanese Name: Kamasu-sawara

Kohala to the shores of Waikoloa, I encountered setbacks. The wheel bearing broke from the boat’s trailer. So finally, Wednesday, as the sun was rising over Mauna Kea and I was getting off work, we headed for Kawaihae Harbor. The water was glistening and perfect. We headed up the Kohala coast, passing Mahukona’s wind channel, and it was still perfect. We dropped our custom lures at Black Point and as we continued heading north towards Coast Guard Point, my second longest rigger started to “screeeeaaammm.” Hanapa‘a! Woohoo! 20lb Ono. We decided to give it another try in the same place and my long outrigger lure “SCCCRRREEEAAAMMMEEDD!” and continued to “scream!” Hanapa‘a again! As I am reeling it in, this hardhead, stubborn 48 lb “doza” Ono decided to come in between my 2 motors. We gaffed that buggah and brought him aboard. High five’s were everywhere. What an awesome blessing for my boat and myself. What an awesome day and many more to come!

Scientific Name: Aprion virescens Hawaiian Name: Ukupalu Japanese Name: Aochibiki 30




Fish Stories


pallet holding mahis was just a lucky find for us. We reversed course and continued heading for LL bouy. The bird population was even more spread out as we trolled on, and this led me to believe we might not get lucky again. Time to change plans. We changed course and this time ran downwind heading towards home with Jamie on the wheel and myself on the bridge. On the way we encountered the same orange float from the morning. With little fish activity showing anywhere around it, we continued downwind, passing the float when the outrigger’s rubber band snapped waking up everyone onboard. We had a fish, a big fish, on our biggest reel on the starboard side. Kurt, Jamie, and I immediately began taking in unnecessary lines. Meanwhile, the active reel on strike drag was clicking away uncontrollably. The captain, Ed, instructed me to put the reel in low gear and I began cranking it in now that all the unnecessary lines were stowed. About half of the spool was already taken out by the fish. I continued reeling in the fish for some time and my arms burned. I was excited and also scared to see what was on the other end of this line. Finally the band marking the outrigger lure distance was on the reel. Hopefully it was only a matter of time now before we had a monster fish onboard. By this time, the whole crew, Jamie, Kurt, and Ed were on deck equipped with gaffs, gloves, and a ready bat. I continued reeling in the

My First Marlin It was only my second time out on the fishing vessel “Alissa’s Pelican” with Ed as the captain, Kurt as the first mate, and Jamie

fish wouldn’t come his way. Ed and Kurt were farther forward. Blood was

the way, I moved back, out of the way and was instructed to take the

flying everywhere. I turned around and focused on driving for a couple

wheel. The boat was in gear, idling, being pushed along by the swell. I

seconds. I thought about what was happening and was terrified! This

looked behind me in time to see two or three gaffs haul in a monster

fish a little bigger than myself was bouncing all over the boat behind

marlin. The fish landed on deck, the hook came out, as well as the gaffs.

me. The sheer power in this fish was frightening. I turned back around,

Then, the fish went ballistic. It flipped and flopped fighting for its life.

watched Ed pick up the bat and smack the fish repeatedly on the head.

Jamie, trapped at the back of the boat, was looking down hoping the

The fish just got wilder until Ed found the “sweet spot” and the fish calmed down to its death.

and myself as the crew. I was excited and ready for another day

We all released our breath and assessed the damage. One broken gaff

of fishing. The morning was fairly dead with lighter trade winds

and blood everywhere. No one was hurt but there was a huge clean up

and little bird activity. Every now and then we would spot a tern

awaiting. Buckets went into the ocean and the cool seawater cleaned

running with the wind. The bird population was spread out and

the fish and washed away most of the blood. Some scrubbing was

little bird piles were seen over the course of the day. I was fairly

required as the blood reached as high as the flying bridge. Jamie and I

disappointed in the lack of activity but it was a sunny day with lots

took a photo with the fish and then we stowed the fish after cutting its

of promise before us. We trolled our lines up to X buoy only to find

bill off to allow it to fit in the box. Remoras sucked to the deck until we

little bird activity and nothing on the depth sounder. We did some

threw them overboard and watched them swim away confused.

circles around X and then decided to run up wind towards LL bouy.

After the fish was in the box, the boat cleaned, and the lines back

Last time I went fishing, X buoy was productive. This time it only disappointed me. On our way, we discovered a barnacled red plastic pallet with


line until the leader was at the end of the rod. Not wanting to get in

out, my mind continuously replayed this monster fish, equivalent to Both are experienced and know what the fish like. I hope that

my own weight, going ballistic on our deck. It was all a new and wild

someday I will have the experience and knowledge that they do.

experience. Ed, Kurt, and Jamie were confident during the event as well

English and Japanese writing on it - was this tsunami debris from

Soon another fishing vessel discovered our spot and also began

as calm. That definitely sets a great example for a newbie like me. It

Japan? We circled the pallet and – triple hanapaa! - found it to be

trolling around the pallet. After some time, unsuccessful, it left

was only my second time fishing and we landed a marlin. I had expected

productive. This immediately ended my earlier disappointment. We

and went offshore. A few more unproductive circles and no fish, we

the day to be fairly dead and unproductive judging by the early hours,

landed a couple fair sized mahi trolling, and then jigged the debris

decided to follow the other boat, which now was working about a

but after the mahis and marlin, my whole insight of what fishing was

with dead bait. We lost a couple bait but also brought in some more

1/2 mile away, to see if this was a rubbish line. We found a small

had changed forever. I now know how fun, dangerous, and sensational

biting mahi. Jamie lost his bait once, and then an iwa bird flew by

brown float and a nice sized orange float in the area but had no

fishing can be. Long periods of boredom followed by small intense

the boat with the bait. Watching Kurt and Jamie jig was impressive.

bites. Continuing on there seemed to be no rubbish line and the

intervals of pure adrenaline. I can’t wait to go out again!




Fish Stories

J A K E Y A G O , C H E F , S H E LT E R L O D G E

The best fishing day of my life! Back home from a summer job as the chef for Shelter Lodge in Juneau, Alaska, I had a chance to go fishing with other staff as a guest of Gary “Tunda” Yoshimoto. The gang was in town for the annual Kauai Alaska banquet to celebrate another great fishing season and line up guests for next year. Taking up Gary’s offer to run around Nawiliwili Harbor for some opihi, whipping and throw

Jake drove us crazy as he frequently adjusted his line by pulling the drag and not opening the reel bail. We thought we had strikes all day.

net action were Captain Wade, lodge assistant Ben Huntley, good friend Brent Young and myself. Being an opportunistic fishe-rman myself (translation – not hard core like the other guys), I brought along my “box store”

At some point the boat broke free from the anchor and Brent

standard terminal tackle and some nice lures. Actually, one of the

saved it from running onto the rocks. He couldn’t find the anchor

killer casting lures I brought along that day was a Mepps little wolf

so he held the boat while I finished whipping and the others

blue/silver spoon I purchased from the same box store a couple

returned from opihi picking. The bummer part was that some time

years back. It reminded me of the Pixie spoons we use in Alaska

after I landed my oio, the tip eye on my pole broke and I thought

for dolly vardens and pink salmon.

I was done for the day.

Between the banquet prep, travel schedule, parties and other

When everyone returned to the boat, we headed up the Nawiliwili

commitments, the only day we could fish with Gary was on

River to troll. Wade, being a master fisherman, saved the rod tip

Friday, November 9, before the banquet. Gary launched his boat

guide by heating up the tip and pulling the eye off. Now my second

at Nawiliwili Harbor mid-morning and we headed across to the

guide became my tip eye and I was back in business. Gary said

breakwater. The trade winds were up so we anchored in the lee

to drag line as we worked up stream to practice throwing net on

of the wall and Gary and Wade jumped in the water to pick opihi.

some tilapias. I dropped my line back with my blue Mepps little

Brent and I grabbed our whipping poles and set out to work the

wolf spoon and waited for action.

and couldn’t move. Calling upon my natural fishing instincts, I decided to try my

pole and finessed it to the boat. Whoo yaah! It was bigger than the oio! It was a 19 inch barracuda that jumped on the blue Mepps

few casts into the stiff trade winds and having to pull a couple

spoon. I was lucky as it was hooked on the front tip of the jaw so

ninja-like moves to dodge my spoon, I immediately realized plan

my line didn’t get cut by its sharp teeth.

of the wall and started to work the smooth water. With the wind at

Three with a broken rod tip, two lip-hooked barracudas, and all with one of the three treble hook barbs missing on his Mepps spoon.



Finally, Gary looked over and called out a real strike. It was my pole bending over from the strike. I fought that fish on my broken

luck on the windward side of the breakwall as plan “A.” After a

“B” would be the better option. I climbed over to the leeward side

Mepps blue/silver little wolf spoon.

However, after 30 more minutes of pounding the water, nothing.

fishing gear that featured a $30 whipping pole setup with some

breakwater. Ben was burnt from prior engagements with the sun

Jake hooks four fish that day on his

jacked with one 14 inch monster in the box, I set out to catch more.

Ten minutes later, I took another strike. This time I landed a nice frying-pan size white papio. I was having fun and kicken’ it now!

my back, on the third cast of my Mepps little wolf spoon, I took a

Finally, I hooked into another barracuda that was a little smaller

hit. The fish fought hard, but I eventually landed it and was stoked

than the first. Once again, the cuda was hooked on the front lip so

as it was my first! Now the only problem was to figure out what

he didn’t cut my line. My fish were the only fish caught that day on

kind of fish it was. I walked it over to my friend Brent to ask for

the poles. We called it quits at about 4 p.m.

his advice. He identified it as an oio or bonefish and noted that

I’d like to thank Gary “Tunda” Yoshimoto for taking us fishing

it’s very rare to catch one whipping with a spoon. He said it was a

that day. Also Mahalo to my fishing partners who provided expert

good eating fish, especially as fish cake. I decided to take it home

guidance and help identifying my fish and fixing my pole. All in all,

to mom and have her make up some fresh fish cake. After feeling

it was an awesome day --- my best fishing day ever!

“The fish fought hard, but I eventually landed it and was stoked as it was my first!” ISSUE FOURTEEN 2013


2013 Kahana Lawai‘a ‘Ohana Camp B Y K I M I M A K A I A U P H O T O S B Y M A R K H O L L A D A Y





ALU LIKE, Inc. and Ho‘āla ‘Āina Kūpono in collaboration with the Department of Land & Natural Resources- Division of State Parks held the first annual Kahana Lawai‘a ‘Ohana Camp on July 17-20, 2013. The camp was sponsored by Conservation International’s Hawai`i Fish, which established the Lawai`a ‘Ohana Camp program in 2011, with the aim of promoting sustainable fishing and gathering practices while bringing families together to pass on traditional knowledge from one generation to the next through hands-on learning experiences. The Kahana camp was one of eight camps held on six different Hawaiian islands this summer.





Today, ownership of the 5,300 acre ahupua‘a is under the State of Hawai‘i and stands as the only “living park” in the state desig nated with the purpose to n“ urture and foster native Hawaiian culture and spread knowledge of its values and ways.” The ahupua‘a of Kahana is recognized as a unique cultural landscape where Hawaiian traditions and values have been the foundation that has guided land use and resource management. Ahupua‘a ‘o Kahana, formerly Kahana Valley State Park, is located on the windward side of O‘ahu in the land district of Ko‘olauloa. Its rich history and land ownership traces back to Chieftess Analea Keohokālole, mother of King David Kalākaua. For many generations, the lush valley floor and abundance of fresh water supported hundreds of lo‘i where kalo was cultivated. Several fishponds and Kahana Bay provided a wealth of fish, shellfish, and limu. Today, ownership of the 5,300 acre ahupua‘a is under the State of Hawai‘i and stands as the only “living park” in the state designated with the purpose to “nurture and foster native Hawaiian culture and spread knowledge of its values and ways.” Approximately 35 families, all of whom have ancestral ties to this ‘āina, currently reside there. This year’s camp was open to Kahana keiki ages 5-14 years of age and their ‘ohanas. There were over 40 keiki and a total of 15 ‘ohana who participated in this year’s camp. Workshops included learning about the history and mo‘olelo of Kahana Valley, fish species and regulations, native and invasive limu, and the restoration of the Huilua Fishpond. Other hands-on activities included a community hukilau, cleaning and preparing fish, harvesting and pounding kalo from the lo‘i, nighttime tide pooling, and more! Each ‘ohana also built their own dry boxes, which some started using during camp, that all were able to take home. A heavy emphasis was placed on teaching participants about the importance of responsible and sustainable fishing practices from a standpoint of both traditional management and modern regulations. However, our main desire was to provide opportunities in which these keiki and ‘ohana could practice these traditions that were so integral to way of life of their ancestors. This camp could not have been possible without the generous donations and support provided by the Hawai‘i Fish Trust, Hanapa‘a Hawai‘i, Butigroove and HiLife Clothing, Izuo Brothers, Turtle Bay Resorts, Holladay Photo, and the dozens of dedicated volunteers. For more information, please contact Kimi Makaiau



at To view more photos and video of the camp, please visit and click on the Kahana Lawai‘a link.



Kahana Lawai‘a ‘Ohana Camp The goal of this camp was to promote sustainable fishing and gathering practices while bring ing families together, and to pass on traditional knowledge from one generation to the next throug h hands-on learning experiences. 40




Our main desire was to provide opportunities in which these keiki and ‘ohana could practice these traditions that were so integ ral to way of life of their ancestors.

Kahana Lawai‘a ‘Ohana Camp 42





friend from the fish auction recently texted me a picture with the note: “Eh – your friend got $6.00/lb. for his saba.” My reply, “SABA?”…. I took a better look at the texted photo and thought it might have been an outof-focus opelu or (oeoe). Then it hit me, yes… a saba. The only thoughts

racing through my head now were WTH, OMG and BYOB… BYOB? Yep. They’re great with (Japanese) beer! One of my most ono-licious fish! They’re usually found in colder water around Japan, Australia, Mexico, California and Hawaii?


Saba ready for processing – part of the days 350 Metric Ton catch awaiting processing at a facility in Japan. Majority of this catch will go to human consumption.







Akinono’s Lisa Ito displays 2 saba dishes – Saba Nigiri (sushi) and broiled saba… Oishii desu!”

Saba can be caught year-long, but the highest quality product is harvested during November through December. So I called my friend, Dedric, on Molokai who caught it to find out what/where/how/really? He said “so that’s what happened to the fish.” While packing his bottomfish catch to ship to the fish auction in Honolulu that morning, he explained his helper (daughter) packed the saba in the box by mistake. He was intending to use it as bait for the next trip. He and another friend both confirmed fishermen do catch them regularly – smaller opelu/akule-sized ones at night while catching akule or opelu and bigger 2-pounders while bottomfishing at depths of about 100 fathoms. He recalls his grandfather caught them regularly too when he was younger and they used to just fry them up… If grandpa didn’t use it for bait. Bait? Yep. To some, saba is bait or palu. But if you haven’t had it served up to you in an

A sampling of the boats catch is bailed out of the boat and into a pickup bed for buyers inspection

izakaya or sushi bar, you’re missing out. Just like other types of local fish – opelu, oama, etc., fishermen who catch them regularly also do both. Sometimes bait, sometimes eat. But the saba that Dedric hauled in is the gomasaba (sesame mackerel) as it’s known in Japan. In the texts it’s referred to as the Blue mackerel (Scomber australasicus). The saba referred to

Saba buyers in Japan view vessels catches from viewing platforms (reversed bleachers).

most commonly however, is the Pacific mackerel or Pacific chub mackerel (Scomber japonicas). In Japan and the izakaya-world it is known as matsuwasaba or “ma-saba” for short. The difference between the two? Goma saba has a spotted body, larger darker eyes



and coloration vs. the brighter, smaller-eyed

through December. More so for the smaller “opelu-sized” saba as the smaller ones

and spotless ma-saba. There is also a hybrid

are more fragile and tend to break down faster than the larger sizes. Cold water

called the hira-goma. But the most important

during the winter months also produces better quality fish not just for saba but for

distinction, however, is said to be the quality -

many other species so it shouldn’t be a surprise.

both in the food and the bait world. The goma

Former bottomfishermen that fished in the Northwest Hawaiian Islands (ranging

saba is known to break down fast so it’s not a

from Necker to Midway and Kure Atoll) have also reported that saba is pretty

favorite of most restaurants or sushi bars. The

common up there.

same is true for the fisherman using it as bait

So just because the goma-saba is said to be the lower grade of the two (actually

who’s had it break apart before the mahimahi

three if you include the hira-goma), that doesn’t mean it’s a expendable fish. Even

got to it. They know now one of the reasons why.

Santa Miyoshi of Tokkuri Tei restaurant was amazed when I recently told him of

Another reason for the lower grade? Seasons.

this episode. He exclaimed “We have saba In Hawaii? They use them for bait?

Saba can be caught year-long, but the highest

That one expensive in Japan!” So if you do catch one, any fish (eating)-lover or

quality product is harvested during November

bottomfisherman/mahimahi fisherman would appreciate the donation.



PRIDE AND HUMILITY Catching Up with Kona Master Sueto Matsumura

“Nothing beats the feel of holding the line and fighting the fish one on one.”

Story and photos by Clay Tam


e recently caught up with long time fishermen Mr. Sueto Matsumura from Kona on the island of Hawaii. He has seen many changes in 78 years of living and fishing along the

Kona coast. His father, Tsue Matsumura, owned and operated a general store along with a sampan called “Lily L”. With no harbors in the area, the boat was moored offshore. Mr. Sueto recalls that each time the Lily L came back from fishing, his sisters would paddle their canoe loaded with ice about a quarter mile offshore to resupply the vessel. The ice was exchanged for fish that was brought to shore and driven to Hilo Suisan for sale. In the days after the war, small fishing boat ramp access was scarce on the west side of the island with the only available boat ramp located in Kailua Kona by the King Kamehameha Hotel. This was prior to the building of the Honokohau Harbor, now home to the world renowned Kona charter fishing fleet. To this day Mr. Sueto still remembers the birth of the fledging charter fleet and fishing among charter legends such as Henry Chee and George Parker. Although Mr. Sueto only started commercial fishing in 1970, he learned fishing at an early age like many long time fishermen in Hawaii. He mastered the fishing methods for menpachi, opelu, bottom fish and Kona crab. His true passion is palu ahi fishing which he learned from another Kona fishing legend, Stanley Hirai. Mr. Sueto was taught traditional ahi fishing from a canoe using “make-dog” style or “drop stone” technique of handline fishing. This method is really hard work requiring hand pulling a large ahi





Reflecting back on his ordeal, he was very thankful for being alive and to be able to talk about his fishing tale ahi from running, knowing that the handline was around his ankle. The ahi made one hard run taking line straight over the side; helplessly, Mr. Sueto tried all his might to stop the ahi. He could only manage to slow it down. He watched in horror as the line came tight around his ankle and he could feel the line slowly cut into his flesh. All he could do was to pray that it would not take him over board. As Mr. Sueto struggled to hold the line, he heard a pop. When he looked down at his ankle, he saw the line had snapped due to a kink. He was fortunately saved from going over board and being tragically lost at sea. Like a true fishermen the only thing on his mind was losing that ahi for New Years. After





wrapped his bleeding ankle in some gauze inch by inch versus landing an ahi today in minutes with the flip

he quickly outgrew the P14 as he honed his ahi fishing skills.

and a towel. With the bleeding around his

of a switch. With the pride and humility of an old time fisherman

Through a series of upgrades, he finally settled on the vessel he

ankle under control, he decided to continue

Mr. Sueto says “nothing beats the feel of holding the line and

now fishes, a 21’ GlasPly.

fishing for one more ahi instead of heading

fighting the fish one on one.”


It is customary in the islands for fishermen to catch and give

home. He reset his gear and within a short

Learning how to catch ahi is one thing, but to be consistently

away fresh fish to bring in the New Year. This is believed to bring

time hooked and landed a 160 lb. ahi. Only

successful required the understanding of many other factors.

good luck and fortune throughout the upcoming year. For many

now could he return home to enjoy the New

Traditionally, ahi were found in areas called “Koa,” the locations

families growing up in Hawaii, this family tradition of sharing

Year’s celebration.

of which were accurately pinpointed using landmarks. These

fresh fish for the New Year celebration or special occasions is a

landmarks, which are still in use today, were the equivalent of

point of pride and thanksgiving.

Returning last to the boat ramp his family and the other fishermen gathered to see

our modern day GPS latitude/longitude. Mr Sueto shared that

One year, Mr. Sueto was fishing by himself for ahi to give away

what had happened to him. At the boat ramp

to successfully catch ahi, “you also had to know the currents,

for the New Year. A couple of days prior to New Year’s day, he

he was too nervous to look at his injury and

tides, and moon phases.” Even to this day, most of this in depth

was on his favorite ahi koa off of Milolii with one 110 pound ahi

was taken immediately to the hospital where

local knowledge is passed along through oral history, from one

in the boat. This was still not quite enough fish for him to give

he received 35 stiches. The worst part was

generation of fishermen to the next each adding to the whole

away to all of his family and friends. He continued fishing as

that he could not fish for 2 months until his

connecting them through time immemorial.

other boats left the fishing grounds to head home. After some

ankle healed. Reflecting back on his ordeal,

Once Mr. Sueto mastered ahi fishing from a canoe, it was time

time he hooked into an ahi which was larger than his first. As he

he was very thankful for being alive and to

to get his first boat to expand his hunt for the elusive ahi. Since

fought this fish the handline somehow coiled around leg causing

be able to talk about his fishing tale! Mr.

waters in Kona are usually calm year round, he really didn’t need

his ankle to become entangled. The ahi was stubborn and as it

Sueto is a true a legend in Hawaii’s rich

a big boat so he acquired a 14’ “P 14”. Like many good fishermen

continued to fight hard, Mr. Sueto continually tried to stop the

fishing history.





Whew! What a way to wrap up the second half of 2013 with a flurry of community events. Heading into December as we write this PIFG Koa article, we take a moment to catch our breath and peek back at some of the PIFG highlights from the last few months. Much of PIFG’s time and energy went into preparing for the first Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Week, October 5-13, 2013, as designated by the Hawaii State Legislature. If you missed it, here’s a quick recap of the festive week’s events.

2nd Keiki Art Contest – October 2013 Pacific Islands Fisheries Group hosted the 2nd Keiki Art contest that was open to students from grades 3-12 across the state. This year’s theme, taken from the PIFG Fishermen’s Pledge for Future, was “Respecting All Fishing Practices, Traditions and Culture.” Over 500 creative students expressed their vision of the theme in their artwork that was judged for Visual Impact, Artistic Merit and Original Concept. The esteemed panel of judges included Edgy Lee, Kathy Muneno, Jason and Tracy Teraoka, Naoki Hiyashi, Dean Sensui, Cindy Paliracio and this year’s Keiki Art Contest coordinator Ed Watamura.

Sea-To-Me Tasting Event - October 5 On October 5, 2013 at the Pomaika‘i Ballrooms, PIFG and Culinary Institute of the Pacific hosted the second Sea-ToMe tasting event featuring Hawaii’s greatest Chefs and up & coming culinary students from campuses of the University of Hawaii Culinary Programs. Together they produced seafood delights that showcased Hawaii’s fresh, healthy and awesome local fish. This year, in addition to the wonderful food and drinks, event goers jumped in on silent auction

bidding for great fishing and non-fishing items, learned about our local fishing culture and traditions through the integrated displays and enjoyed some awesome local entertainment. Proceeds from the event went to support the UH culinary schools. PIFG would like to extend a big mahalo to all the participating chefs, students and generous donors that made Sea-To-Me a success. For photos from this event visit

Fishing For Hawaii’s Hungry Tournament - October 5-6, 2013 This year, the new kid on the block stepped up to help PIFG host the 2nd Fishing for Hawaii’s Hungry tournament to benefit the Institute for Human Services. The Hawaii Fishermen’s Alliance for Conservation and Tradition, or HFACT, as its more commonly known, helped to plan and host the tournament that donated over 700 pounds of fresh Hawaii caught fish to help feed our disadvantaged community.



The winners, noted below, were recognized at the 8th Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival. First place winners received $300 and second place winners $150, with matching contributions going to their respective schools. A big MAHALO goes out to Chevron for sponsoring this event, making the generous awards possible. Congratulations to all winners of PIFG’s 2nd Keiki Art Contest:





Makana Yamashita

Kawaikini NCPCS


1st place

Dylan Kokubun

Kahului Elementary 5

2nd place

Hye Lim Kim

Stevenson Middle


1st place

Inana Lowry



2nd place

Erin Voss

Moanalua High


1st place

Quijun Wu

Moanalua High


2nd place

8th Annual Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival - October 13, 2013 The Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Week festivities culminated in the 8th annual Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival on October 13th at the Honolulu Fishing Village on Pier 38. This year’s Festival featured fresh seafood, fishing and ocean product vendors, informative displays, keiki activities and games, live fishing and dive demonstrations and entertainment. Manoa DNA anchored the main stage, along with Festival veterans Kenny Endo Taiko Center of Honolulu, Palaka Ohana Band and the Namaka O Pu’uwai Aloha Halau. Working through the loss of nine NOAA vendors, the USCG auxiliary and Cutter, and the US Air Force Hana Hou Band in the week leading up to the festival due the federal shutdown, the PIFG crew scrambled to fill the gaps and again managed to put on another great community event. Even with the thunderous downpoor toward the end of the day, the event still drew over 20,000 happy festival goers. As always, this event would not be possible without the tremendous support of our fishing and seafood communities, generous donors and sponsors and over 300 volunteers. Mahalo to everyone for making sure fishing and seafood remain at the heart of Hawaii’s traditions and culture. For event photos, visit



Bottomfish Cooperative Research PIFG completed two Gear Calibration Cruises that took place in the sheltered-offshore waters between the islands of Maui, Lanai and Kahoolawe between April 18-24, 2013 and August 1-9, 2013. This collaborative research evaluates potential fishery independent sampling methods that can be used to improve deep-7 bottom fish stock assessments. In coordination with the NOAA Research Vessel, Oscar Elton Sette, PIFG fishing vessels observed detailed sampling (fishing) operations alongside the Sette as it conducted acoustic beam, Automated Underwater Vehicle (AUV) and Remote Operated Vehicle (ROV) sweeps in designated sampling areas. In concert with this research the R/V Hukipono deployed Bottom Cameras (Botcam) to collect additional information. All data collected from these cruises are analyzed by NOAA Pacific Island Fisheries Science Center. On the August 2013 Gear Calibration cruise, Botcam video footage recorded, on 5 different stations (drops), live tagged opakapaka swimming among others attracted to the camera. This rare video footage is available on the PIFG website Thank you to all bottom fishermen statewide who reported tagged bottomfish recoveries during the project period from September 25, 2012 to September 24, 2013. One of the recovered tagged opakapaka traveled from Penguin Bank to Oahu and two others traveled from Maui to Kahoolawe. If you should recapture a tagged bottomfish, please call PIFG at (808) 265-4962 for information on growth, travel and length of liberty. PIFG will need the following information when calling: Tag number, Date of capture, species, fork length measurement, location, depth and weight (optional). We would like to thank the following PIFG Captain and Observers for making this past year such a huge success: Capt. Gary Dill, Dennis Dill F/V Imua, Capt. Layne Nakagawa, Ryan Koshi F/V Naomi K, Capt. Nathan Abe, Kevin Awa and Kent Onaka F/V Hokuloa and Ride On, and Observers: Eddie Ebisi III, Bob Moffit, Scott Eguchi, James Tanaka, Hunter Farr and Brealand Tam.

Hawaii Oio Tagging Project


Oio occur around all the Main Hawaiian islands and are part of local diets wherever


they are caught. They are an important and sustainable resource which contributes

reported tag recoveries. Short term (less

to the local food security of our islands.

than a year) tag recoveries indicate that

he purpose of this project was to collect and add to existing available information on the two species of bonefish, locally known as oio, around the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Historically oio were a highly sought after food resource and remain so to this day.

Most anglers recognize the oio solely as a fish caught by casting from the beach or lay netting in the

the large nearshore schools of oio travel

nearshore areas. The existence of offshore aggregations of oio has long been known to commercial

and freely intermix along the Waianae coast

fishermen but not widely known to recreational shoreline anglers. These offshore schools have not

of Oahu, Hawaii. The species composition

been heavily commercially exploited since the early 1980’s due to competition with imports of less

of the schools also showed that the schools

expensive fish that have replaced the locally caught oio once used for making fish cake.

can be species specific or mixed as well. It

This project focused on locating offshore populations of oio, which were then targeted to be captured and held for tagging through the use of the traditional Hawaiian commercial fishing method, known locally as the deep water bag net fishing. This highly selective and effective fishing method is used for many schooling species and enables the targeted fish to be held alive and unharmed within the surround while allowing the unwanted fishes to be released alive in the process. This fishing method and proven high volume tagging methodology adopted from high volume tuna tagging projects were successfully brought together in this first-of-a-kind tag and release research project. Previous

will be interesting and enlightening to see long term recoveries (over 1 year) which could provide insight on the growth and movement of this important local resource. Some growth rate information was generated from the short term recaptures where time at liberty ranged from 2 days to 169 days. Growth rates ranged from zero


to 2.8 inches. Future oio tag recoveries will

efforts by an existing oio

yield more information on seasonal and

tagging project on Oahu

perhaps long term growth rates.




opportunistic recreational

Oio Tag Recovery Information If you catch an oio with a green PIFG dart


tag, please give us a call at (808) 265-4962

deploy and recover tags.

or send an email to pacificfisheries@gmail.





targeted the nearshore shallow water flats and shoreline areas which

com with the following information: Tag Number, Date of Capture, Time, Location, Species (round or sharp jaw, see example), and Fork Length measurement. Please remove and keep the tag for return until

Lawai’a Subscription Drive


Mahalo to all of you Lawai’a Magazine supporters and especially those who signed up for one or two year subscriptions at the Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival, Sea-To-Me Tasting Event and Fishing for Hawaii’s Hungry Tournament. The subscription drive continues through 2014, so look for our ad in this issue of Lawai’a Magazine or email PIFG at Sign up today to have Lawai’a sent to you directly for $24.00 for one year or $44.00 for two years.

tagging only one of the two species of oio. This provided an incomplete picture of the status of

For recovering and reporting a PIFG

the oio stock around Oahu. This new tagging project seeks to gather data that can help provide a

tagged oio, you will receive a one-of-a-kind

broader perspective on the biological information and status of the oio stocks around Oahu.

oio t-shirt (artwork by created by the late

If you’d like to step up and take personal responsibility, PIFG encourages you to take the pledge – the Fishermen’s Pledge for the Future. Whether you are an individual, family, club or organization, The Pledge confirms your commitment of responsibility for your fishing practices and activities. To learn more about the Pledge or discuss how the Pledge can further benefit you and/or your organization, visit, call or email a PIFG representative at 808-265-4962 or www.




PIFG contacts you.

Coordination and preparation of volunteers consisted of targeted scouting for schools of oio,

Mike Sakamoto) along with an informational

conducting the fishing operation with real-time status updates to the project coordinator, real-time

letter stating the initial tagging information

notification of volunteer tagging crew on the status of a tagging opportunity, transport of personnel

collected of when, where, and fork length.

and gear to the meeting site, deploying to tagging site via small vessels, and conducting the tag and

We appreciate your help, support, and

release operation. A total of 3,000 oio were tagged during the project. Five oio were tagged during a

cooperation. Together we can help sustain

trial tagging trip on February 18, 2011 and, subsequently, 2,995 oio were tagged during four volunteer tagging events on March 26, 2011, May 15, 2011, July 1, 2012 and July 22, 2012.


As of December 2013, there were over 70

our fisheries by getting involved with research efforts, by living the Fisherman’s Pledge and by fishing responsibly.



No Hope Of Self-Reliance B Y


How would Hawaii fisheries adapt if the population of O‘ahu grew to 2 million people?

The places to start are kipuka (clear spots around which

Examples of how fishing strengthens relationships are

lava has flowed) because they are removed from mainstream

the socializing of children, strengthening of family ties,

contemporary life in the State of Hawai‘i. Such communities

transmission of cultural knowledge and overall maintenance

How could this happen? Through DEVELOPMENT. Plans for

are relatively isolated from urbanization and are homes for

of social equilibrium. These and other linkages constitute

several generations who strive toward self-reliance.

a “resource” that is not often considered in analyzing the

a much bigger Kaka‘ako are just one example. What would the new population eat? Hawai‘i relies on

Complete self-sufficiency is improbable in Hawai‘i. Even

out-of-state sources for over 85 percent of its food. Without

islands that have high rates of subsistence only gather

regular shipping, Hawai‘i might not have enough incoming

about 40 percent of their own food consumption. In some

The lack of ecosystem management policy at the national

food (not counting cans) to last more than two weeks.

cases, localization can rebuild the connections to fisheries

level has empowered people and communities to attempt

Even with about 1 million residents, Hawai‘i continues

lost in today’s amorphous and transient society. In these

experiments on the ground. The early evidence is that land-

to maintain many traditional ties to fishing. Responsible

cases, the role of government should move from central

based approaches are achieving success.

actions by citizens and communities are necessary for

and coercive to support.

value of traditional ties to the ocean. These improvements are unlikely if the population of O‘ahu continues to grow.

People should not wait for disaster before they prepare.

It is the basic processes

long-term, wise use of marine resources. If participation

Some fishing communities are already active in

of habitat, spawning and

is limited to an elite few, conservation will not spread to a

advisory roles or as sources of fishery data. Other groups,

management approaches resulting from community-based

wider community.

recruitment periods, migration and aggregation patterns that fishermen can personally observe and that they associate with continuity and sustainability of a fishery.



Just as diversity is valued in the ocean, diversity in

however, are striving to become partners in all facets of

approaches should also be welcomed. Not every community

Management of Hawai‘i fisheries is usually discussed in

management. There is nothing to be gained by treating

will behave the same. Nor should they be the same.

terms of scientific research and government regulation

local residents as adversaries in ecosystem management

without regard to the level of public confidence and

of marine resources.

It is the basic processes of habitat, spawning and recruitment periods, migration and aggregation patterns

cooperation in this process. With many more residents, it

Even in kipuka, there is considerable variability in fish

would be too easy to lose traction with ocean uses, as well

abundance. These are spatial, related to differences in

as sources of healthy local seafood.

bottom habitat, and temporal, related to pulses of new

This knowledge was once fundamental to survival in

Now is the time to further localize the ocean traditions

recruits to fish populations. Hawaiian civilization adapted

Hawai‘i. And we may need it again to sustain the residents.

that remain in Hawai‘i. Can links to fisheries be saved?

to this variability through much trial and error. Few

The number of residents that the island of O‘ahu can

Or would traditional lifestyles be lost through further

mechanisms have been created, however, to apply such

support is definitely not two million. One million residents

urbanization and over-development?

knowledge to contemporary fisheries management.

is probably also too many.

that fishermen can personally observe and that they associate with continuity and sustainability of a fishery.



gear review

Beauty and the Beast


The first time I laid eyes on the Fin-Nor Santiago 130 Unlimited I was impressed by its beautiful fit and finish and that gorgeous side plate. But after reading its specifications, I realized it’s a beast!! This reel is the latest addition to the Santiago family and it was built to catch “da big boys” or “big mamas “ as in the case of marlins. The line capacity is huge, holding 1200 yards of 130-pound mono and 2,500 yards of 200-pound braid. The maximum drag is an

Cool it Brah

unparalleled 100 pounds with an 80 pound strike drag while still allowing free spool. When you settle into

Seattle Sports Frost Pak is constructed out of heavy duty vinyl and

the fight you will appreciate the one piece machined 6061-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum frame that allows

made tough to last for years. The material is just like a fish bag, which

smoother alignment and the ergonomic handle that will make cranking more comfortable ( if that’s

makes it waterproof and easy to clean the fish blood off. These bags are

possible) hahaha. Also the two speeds -low 1.1-1 and high 2.4-1 will definitely make the fight easier on

engineered for high thermal efficiency and if stored in the shade they

the arm muscles. The uniquely designed drag system sports oversized drag washers surrounding a

will keep ice frozen for three days in a warm climate. When combined

floating, self aligning drag plate to give you smooth performance as the line is peeling off the spool.

with reusable frozen ice blocks, these bags are perfect for keeping your

To really add some beef, Fin-Nor incorporated an oversized center shaft that spins with the aid of

lunch cool and dry on your next fishing trip or family outing. Available

large hybrid ceramic bearings that will never seize. So the next time you venture out looking for a

locally at Charley’s Fishing Supply.

fight with da big ones, bring along these warriors and you will emerge victorious!!

Pop and Dive and Roll Side to Side Sound like a new move from “So You Think You Can Dance?” No, these are the moves of the best topwater lure in its class. The new Shimano Orca Lures are designed with internal weights to duplicate these injured fish actions. The Orca’s are built durable with stainless steel wire through construction, high tensile ultra sharp hooks, and an aerodynamic design for longer casting distance. The Orca comes in 2 sizes, 6.3 inches and 7.5 inches, and a variety of fish attracting colors. These lures are made to attract big fish and they are recommended to be paired with high quality reels and rods to complete the system so you can hang on to da big one!!

Dat’s Cold, Brah Arctic Ice brings you the latest technology in reusable ice blocks. The Tundra and Alaskan Series are so high tech that they are temperature specific. The Active ingredient, Pure Temp, is a plant oil derived “phase-change material” (PCM). It is non-toxic and biodegradable and is not derived from petroleum products or alcohol like most other brands. The Alaskan Series is ideal for keeping your chilled goods cold. The temperature in your refrigerator is around 35-36 degrees F, so the Alaskan Series is designed to hold a constant 33.8 degrees F, while absorbing the heat around it. The Tundra Series has a specific freezing point of 5 degrees F and works best when frozen for at least 36 hours. Check your freezer temperature and you’ll know when it’s ready because the color of the block will change from purple to white. If you want to keep things frozen you need one block to cover the bottom and one to cover the top of your frozen items. These blocks are designed to last longer than ice or blue gel products and they will leave no wet mess like ice. They are also dishwasher safe and of course, reusable. The Arctic and Tundra Series comes in 4 sizes -Small (0.75lbs.), Medium (1.5lbs.), Large (2.5lbs.), and Extra Large (5lbs.).



Lightweight Heavy Hitter

Lures, not malasadas. However, fish love them just as much as we love

The Squall 60LD is Penn’s contender in the graphite frame, lever drag arena. It has several innovative features, including a recessed ergo-

malasadas. Leonard Yamada is a respected fisherman and he makes

nomic drag lever, switch blade harness lugs, and Versa Handle, which lets you choose how long the handle should be depending on whether

lures that have proven themselves repeatedly. Just recently his lure

you need power or speed while bottom fishing or trolling. Another feature is the top of the line Dura-Drag system (same as in the International

caught 2 ahi’s in one day, on my boat, and a 324 pound marlin on my

V series reels) that virtually eliminates hesitation under extreme drag settings. The recessed drag lever will remove any risk of the line getting

friend’s boat. He also makes aku lures that catch when all your other

looped and caught in the drag lever. The line capacity rings give you an approximation of how much line is out and whether or not you need

lures aren’t working. Leonard has fished his whole life in every style

to change tactics. The Switch Blade Harness Lugs can be deployed easily with the tip of your finger or stored flush for com-

of fishing. In fact, aside from being one of the most respected and

fort or to keep from grabbing loose line. In addition to the lightweight graphite frame, these reels also feature a forged

successful bottom fishermen, you don’t want to be standing next to him

and machined aluminum spool, a stainless steel main and pinion gear, a ratcheted lever

while catching oama. He will out fish you so bad it will be embarrassing,

drag to prevent creep, and 6 stainless steel ball bearings. The Squall is braid-ready and

hahaha. Leonard is a humble guy, but his prolific fishing and the perfor-

comes in 5 sizes, from the 30LD to the 60LD. The 60LD will hold 330 yds. of 60 lb. mono

mance of his lures speak volumes. Check ‘em out at POP.

and 775 yards of 100lb. braid. The maximum drag on the 60LD is a whopping 30 pounds.





In 1861 two boys surfing in Lahaina were attacked by a shark at a surf spot called Uo. In the following story from the December 2, 1861 issue of Ka Nupepa Kuokoa, the writer describes how they survived the attack by using a surfboard to fend off the shark. He mau keiki hakaka me ka mano. I ka Poakolu, oia ka la 20 o Novemaba, i ka hora 12 o ke awakea, hele aku la kekahi mau keiki elua, i ka auau kai, o M. Kekiakona, a me K. Kalunakanalima, ma kahi heenalu o Uo, ma Lahaina, ia laua e auau ana, hoea mai la kekahi Mano nui, e 3 anana ka loa, a i ko laua ike ana i ua Mano nei, i aku la kekahi i kekahi, e pau kaua

Boys fight with a shark.

i ka Mano; i mai la hoi kekahi, mai makau oe, hooponopono ia aku ko papa heenalu a kupono i ka

On Wednesday, the 20th of November, at 12 in the afternoon, two boys, named M. Kekiakona and K. Kalunakanalima, went

waha o ka Mano, alaila, ku malie iho la kekahi keiki,

out surfing at a surf spot called Uo at Lahaina. As the two were swimming out, a large shark approached them, 3 fathoms long.

me ka manao e lanakila ana kela ia nui weliweli,

As they saw the shark, one said to the other, “The shark is going to kill us.” The other one said, “Don’t be scared. Aim your

ke nana aku, maluna o laua nei, a i ka manawa i

ua Mano nei, o ka mea nana i hou aku, holo aku la no ia a paa aku la ma ke

surfboard right into the mouth of the shark.” That boy stood still thinking that the huge and terrible looking shark would have

kokoke loa mai ai ua ia nei i ko laua nei wahi e ku

a luna o ka Mano, nanao aku la kekahi lima ma ka mahamaha, a umeume

them both. When the shark got very close to where they were floating, one said to the other nervously, “Shove your board

ana, pane aku la kekahi o laua me ka haalulu, i aku

iho la lakou, a hiki ka ia ma kahi papau, pau kana wahi eha,

into the gills of the shark.” That one shoved his board and hit the shark in the gills. The other boy swam up and grabbed a hold

la. “Pahu ia aku hoi ko papa ma ka mahamaha o ka

lilo na laua nei ka eha i koe, pepehi iho la laua nei i ua Mano nei a make,

of the upper jaw of the shark. He shoved one hand into the gills and the three wrestled together until the fish made its way

Mano, pahu aku la no kela a ku ma ka mahamaha,

kii aku la laua i kekahi poe e kii mai i ua Mano nei, kii ia mai la no ua Mano

into the shallows. He was no longer able to inflict any harm. It was up to the two to inflict injury. The two killed the shark and

holo koke aku la no kekahi keiki a paa ma ka hiu o

nei, lawe ia aku la mauka, Pipi holo kaao.

then went and got someone to come and get it. The shark was retrieved and taken onto the shore. End of story. M. K. Lihauwaiekeekeikalani.

M. K. Lihauwaiekeekeikalani. [Translation by Keao NeSmith]





On September 27, 2002, local attorney Arnold Lum went fishing from his surfboard off Kahala. When a black tip shark attacked him, Lum used the same defensive tactic as the boys in Lahaina in 1861. He pushed his board into the shark and managed to survive without a scratch. The next day the Honolulu Advertiser ran this story about Lum’s incident.

After the incident, Lum traded his surfboard for a kayak. The board with the bite marks from the shark still clearly visible is on display at Go Bananas in Kapahulu.




the ocean decides to happen to you

it doesn’t ask where you bought your gear

or how much you paid it only asks if you’re ready . Really Ready.

We got it. next to nico’s at pier 38 1133 n. nimitz hwy. • honolulu, hi 96817 • 808-537-2905 • toll-free (u.s.): 1-800-288-6644 •

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Lawai'a issue 14  

Lawai'a issue 14