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Fish Stories


Waxwing System The N3 Harness A BETTER WAY TO RIG BAIT

Display until December 31, 2015




Recover a Tagged Bottomfish or O‘io?


Call (808) 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. Species: (The Deep Seven) Opakapaka (Pink Snapper), Onaga (Longtail Snapper), Hapu‘upu‘u (Hawaiian Grouper), Ehu (Squirrelfish Snapper), Kalekale (Von Siebold’s Snapper), Gindai (Brigham’s Snapper), Lehi (Silverjaw Snapper) and Oio (Bonefish).

Ehu Gindai


Reward: In return for your valuable information you’ll receive a special t-shirt reward plus a recovery letter stating how much the fish grew, distance traveled and days at liberty.



For more information about PIFG and its programs, visit www.fishtoday.org





(Opposite) Dylan Javellana, (below left to right) Trachelle Iwamoto, Jessica Kaleiohi, Corey Nakamura and Kiani Pia Salvador participants in the Kaua‘i Big Brothers Big Sisters summer Catch & Release Fishing Expedition at Pu‘u Lua Reservoir in Koke‘e, Kaua‘i






Photos: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i







Editor Pacific Islands Fisheries Group pacificfisheries@gmail.com

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

Design Darin H. Isobe > Art Director darini@hawaiiantel.net Contributing Writers Leo Alipio, Carrie Asuncion, Atlapac Fishing Club, Lucid Avenue, Chuck Balucan, Gary Beals, John Clark, Kaulana Finn, Brian Funai, Scott Haraguchi, Kurt Kawamoto, Brian Kimata, Paulo, Ed Sugimoto, Raymond Westbrook and Ladd Yoshimura Advertising Inquiries pacificfisheries@gmail.com Letters and Comments pacificfisheries@gmail.com Lawai‘a Magazine Every attempt is made to publish Lawai‘a 4 times a year. Printed by Journal Graphics Portland, Oregon USA


Alaska Reel Adventure!

Interested in submitting a story and photos? Send to: pacificfisheries@gmail.com www.Lawaia.net

Reservations & Info (808) 551-1993 info@alaskareel.com





Fish Storie



Waxwing Sy


Display until

Salmon • Halibut • Black Cod • Rockfish Dungeness Crab • Alaskan Spot Shrimp


31, 2015

‘ama‘ama A HISTORIC




ON THE COVER: Brayden Kaya and Garrett Shiroma catching oio in Kaneohe Bay. Photo by Sterling Kaya.




he generations of island people all the way up to Hawaii’s plantation era used to be self sustainable. Understanding diversity, seasonality and the natural resources, we knew how to grow vegetables and raise animals, hunt in the mountains and fish in the ocean to feed ourselves. “Progress” in the form of urbanization and population growth has led us to become more and more dependent on off-island sources of food for our daily lives. Many of us still know how to farm, hunt and fish, but for a majority, these skills are now forms of recreation, culture and tradition. For only a few of us it is our life’s calling as an occupation and more about feeding just our individual selves. With progress, problems have emerged, impacting our communities for a few years now, changing key aspects of our lives here in Hawaii. If you’ve kept up with current news over the last couple of years, you’ve noticed that genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, have been the subject of intense debate. People are concerned about their health and rightly so. However, as with many discussions, extreme viewpoints and actions of a few driven by fear have dominated over rational thinking and the science that has helped us thrive as a modern, enlightened society. Farmers and scientists who actually do the farming and development to keep food safe and affordable for more and more of us are being attacked, oftentimes in many of the same ways and with the same tactics as hunters and fishermen, who have also been demonized in much the same way. More and more new regulations that are making it harder to do farm work are very similar to the increasing regulations that make it harder to hunt and fish to feed people. Much of that comes through political pressure fueled by misinformation and emotion, driven by well funded media campaigns organized by others that disagree with farming, hunting and fishing practices. The same science that we rely on for our food safety says that we should eat more seafood because it is healthy for us. As more and more of our population understands the health benefits of eating fish and other seafood, there needs to be a consistent and reliable supply for our local population. Yet some fishermen are routinely vilified and looked at as greed driven if they are not “sportsmen” with a catch and release ethic that is inconsistent with taking what they need over and above some level that they can personally consume in a day. The honorable and age old practice of sharing catch to feed others in the community that are not able to catch their own fish or afford to purchase it is also not afforded any consideration. Rather than doing the difficult task of using science and working with fishermen to determine sustainable fishing practices and managing fisheries in a useful and sustainable manner, much of the push has been to eliminate fishermen or fishing opportunities. Fishermen have faced recent trends in management actions that either limit or shut

off access to the ocean or that make the activity itself too costly because of imposed overregulation. The creation of marine protected areas and catch share or quota management techniques are some prime examples. Hunters have long been at odds with organizations and agencies tasked with managing our land resources and face issues that are very similar to fishermen and farmers. More and more of our hunting areas are being lost to exclusive preservation management actions, namely fencing. Game management plans continually describe hunting and the presence of game mammals as “inconsistent” with management of “sensitive” forest areas slated for preservation (i.e. – no hunting) while hunters are only seen necessary as temporary eradication tools. On the island of Hawaii, however, hunters are estimated to provide more than 400,000 lbs a year of wild pig meat alone towards the Big Island’s protein supply . Hunting is not only a sport and cultural tradition but also something that could be critical to our survival in times of emergency. Farmers, fishermen and hunters are the people who help feed not only themselves but our island population. They will become even more critical if a man-made disruption or natural catastrophe affects our food supply to these islands. Everyone agrees that Hawaii needs to be more self sufficient in producing our own food. Everyone also agrees that we need to preserve our agricultural land, our forest area and ocean environment for a healthy reef system. Yet our management actions, of which many are often driven by a certain vocal minority of our community, directly conflict with both of these goals. If we continue to allow the attack on the very people who will be able to work the land, hunt in the forest and fish the ocean with enough skill to feed more than just themselves in a disaster, it will not help anyone. If we continue to allow the attack on these very important people in our community to the point that no one can continue to do it, we will lose the accumulated local knowhow, knowledge and expertise from generations of home grown practitioners and scientific progress – and just be shooting ourselves in the foot. The good news is that farmers, fishermen and hunters have come together to dialogue, realizing that we all have the same concerns and often face similar difficulties. In the past, these three parts of our island community kept to themselves and dealt with issues on their own, fought their own battles. But now it is clear that living in an island state makes us all interconnected. We have to put resources, energy and experiences together to address the issues and concerns that will help us all feed ourselves, feed our communities , and work towards the shared goal of increased food security in Hawaii Quoting a friend: “We Americans have a bad habit of always shooting ourselves in the foot...but lately we take it a step further by taking aim...” Sterling Kaya

Publisher Pacific Islands Fisheries Group



Jordan Shimabuku Oio

Chelsey Rivera Barred Jack

Danny Kadowaki Moana Kali

Kili Barrozo 4.2 lb Kagami

Brent Chung 29 lb Ulua

Wes Murakane Ahi Alan Enomoto 6.75 lb Omilu

Sheri Nakayama Mu

Jesse Brown mixed bag stringer

Jessica Marker Tucanare

Jessie Higa Mu


Jay Hernandez 33 lb Ulua

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

Bomboy Llanes 206 lb Ahi

Brian Azama - 5 lb Oio



Guido Zollner Paopao Shellie Hayashi 4 lb Papio



From the Deck





Basic Seamanship - 6 Weather Although many people think that the weather in Hawaii is always nice, for the fisherman/boater one of the first priorities while planning your trip is to be well informed about the weather conditions you might be facing while out on the ocean. It isn’t necessary to be a meteorologist to have a basic understanding of what weather conditions you will be dealing with on your fishing trip. You should be able to interpret the local winds, cloud patterns and ocean swells. With those elements in mind, winds are the first concern, followed by ocean swells and waves and lastly, cloud types and patterns. The ‘prevailing winds’ in Hawaii are called trade winds and blow from east to west. Knowing the direction and strength of the winds is a key indicator as to the ‘comfort’ level the boater will have and how safe it will be while out at sea. The boater must have a basic idea of the winds that their boat can handle as well as the size of the waves that the vessel is capable of dealing with in a safe manner. Most marine weather reports will give the strength of the winds and the direction of the winds. Example: Winds coming from the east and going to the west would be stated as “East winds at 10 knots”.

Rainbow Paint & Fishing Supply Inc

The boater may interpret this as: “Easterly at 10”. Since the waves are produced by the ‘local winds’ and the swells are produced by winds that may be thousands of miles away, wave heights are reported in the marine forecast in feet. The report may say 10 knot winds and 5 foot waves, which the boater can translate into: 10 and 5, with the winds stated first. The boater MUST know the limitations of their boat and their own comfort level to make the call as to how safe it would be to go to sea. As an example, for most 20 foot boats, a forecast of 20 knot winds and 10 foot seas (20 and 10) would be at the upper level of safety. The key here is not to be ‘caught’ at sea when these levels are exceeded. To avoid being ‘caught’, the boater must be able to ‘read’ the weather. This is where you must know if the weather is approaching you or going away from you, as well as how fast the weather (front) is moving. Most forecasts will give you this information but a sign of an approaching front would be that the ‘period’ between swells (not waves) will become shorter and shorter as the front gets close to you. This is usually very obvious over a period of an hour or more. Another clue to an approaching front is that the wind will increase in front of a squall or weather front. By being aware of these signs the boater can avoid most dangerous situations. Cloud types and patterns are another clue to on-coming weather conditions. Dark, rain clouds will produce stronger winds on their ‘leading’ edge. Waterspouts are funnel clouds that may reach the surface of the ocean. They are very dangerous and thus should be avoided when possible. A good source for the most recent weather forecast would be the weather channel of your VHF radio. Another source that gives weather information about a week in advance would be NOAA: http://graphical. weather.gov/sectors/easthawaiiWeek.php?page=2&element=Wx. Keep in mind that the further out (days in advance of departure) the forecast, the less accurate it will be.

• Rod & Reel Repairs • Bait • Bulk Ice • Beer • Sundries • Novelties

A Place Where Tails Come True

(808) 247-0938

Hayden Klein 6 yrs 08/2015

Lihue Fishing Supply • Tel (808) 245-4930 2985 KALENA STREET, LIHUE, HAWAII A KAUA‘I FISHING TRADITION SINCE 1950

Basic Nautical Terms - 6 Weather Prevailing winds: Winds that blow predominantly from a single general direction. The trade winds of the tropics, which blow from the east throughout the year, are prevailing winds. Trade winds: Also called trades. Any of the nearly constant easterly winds that dominate most of the tropics and subtropics throughout the world. Weather front: Weather front is a boundary separating two masses of air of different densities, Period: The length of time between two wave crests.

Basic Marlinspike Seamanship – 6

185 Akaula Street Eleele, Kauai, Hawaii 96705 Phone (808) 335-6412 10


To insure that your lines are ready to be used [put away?] if the weather turns bad, they should be coiled in an orderly manner. The ‘Fireman’s Coil’ is an excellent way of coiling your lines so that they are easily accessible when you need [to move?] them.



What Is It?

P latax teira (spadefish)


Randy Manzano

Native Hawaiians practiced a form of fishing where one walks the shallow reef or sandy flats at night and looks for fish or other marine life aided by a source our light, often an open flame but more recently, gas or battery powered lanterns. This technique is still commonly referred to today as “torching”, a reference back to the earlier practice of lamalama. Randy Manzano likes to take his family out on the South side of Oahu to look for bait and tasty things for the dinner table. On one night, however, he ran into something pretty unusual and something he’s never seen before on previous trips or over his fishing experience. Curious about his catch, Randy contacted marine biologists Norton Chan and Paul Murakawa who recommended that he take his unusual fish to Arnold Suzumoto at the Bishop Museum. Everyone had a suspicion that the fish was the indigenous Platax boersii, a species that has only been collected from Midway Island in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Careful examination by Arnold and his colleague, Dr. Jack Randall, revealed that the fish was really Platax teira (spadefish), a known aquarium import that has been seen around the islands and seems to be well established based on Randy’s catch. So not only are our freshwater bodies of water vulnerable to these kinds of introductions but also our nearshore environments and that is why State of Hawaii, Division of Aquatics regulations prohibit the release of non-native fish and marine life.

Pteraclis aesticola (fanfish) The ocean is a big mixing pot where the sperm and eggs of various fish are cast into this mysterious soup of salt water. How they find each other and make a baby fish is truly a miracle. That being said the laws of genetics keep things in order. Outrageous things mating and producing offspring are virtually nil. Such is the order of the ocean. Although, with all the CSI type DNA sleuthing going on, it is easier to get some answers (if you got the money) to questions of cross breeding, or hybridization, between closely related fish species. Many times an interesting or unusual fish is caught by fishermen and it looks like something familiar that combines two or more known species. When that happens the dockside chatter is usually, “must be crossbreed”, “da fish foolin’ around out there”, “you neva know what’s goin’ on out there” or the more recently popular, “must be Fukushima.” In most cases it turns out to be a rare species of fish and not a crossbreed. Such was the case when the F/V Gutsy Lady 4, a local longline vessel, donated a strange looking fish they caught while longlining. The unusual fish had the color and scales of a monchong but it had the body shape and tail of a mahimahi with fins that looked waaaay toooo big for its body. It seemed that no one on the docks had ever seen anything like this before. Upon returning to port, the unusual fish was given to Neil Kanemoto of Pacific Ocean Producers (POP) for safekeeping and storage. Calls were made and it eventually ended up at the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC). Scientists Robert Humphreys and Bruce Mundy were immediately interested and knew right away what it was. This was no crossbreed but an unusual and rare fanfish, genus

Pteraclis. This genus name Pteraclis is Greek in origin and “ptera” is a reference to a wing and “clis” means shut. This refers to the large dorsal and anal fins that retract into scaly sheaths. Most specimens are found in the stomachs of large predatory fishes such as tuna. Although the specimen has not been identified to species at this time, it is likely the Pacific Fanfish, Pteraclis aesticola, which occurs throughout much of the Pacific region. Its resemblance to the monchong that we all love to eat is because it is in the same family, Bramidae. This fish was a large one (the largest ever seen by Humphreys and Mundy) and will add to the knowledge of this species worldwide. The Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) thanks Captain Tim Jones and his crew for donating this rare fish and hopes that in the future they will continue to donate any unusual creature that they run across. The PIFSC is always open to fishermen wanting to find the answer to the age old question of “what did I just catch?” We want to know too. Please bring in your weird or unusual fish and we’ll try to get you an answer.

Contact PIFSC for questions, information or donations of specimens: Email Kurt Kawamoto at Kurt.Kawamoto@noaa.gov or call (808) 725-5326 Kurt Kawamoto





Aunty Kwong’s Kitchen


(Swordfish) Chili Ingredients: 1 pound shutome 2 tbsp butter 1-2 tablespoons grated ginger

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

Directions: Cut shutome into 1 1/2” chunks, and place in a food processor. Pulse several times until coarsely ground. (Do not chop with a knife as this will make the fish tough). Heat the butter in a large saute pan over medium high heat. Add the shutome and the grated ginger, and saute until the fish is opaque. (The ginger reduces the fishiness.) Add the diced onions, bell peppers and garlic. Saute until softened an additional 3-5 minutes. Add the chili powder, soy sauce, sugar, bay leaves and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the stewed tomatoes and kidney beans, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Mix the cornstarch with the water in a small bowl, then stir into the chili to thicken. Serve with rice or crackers.


1 medium onion, diced 1 small green bell pepper, diced 1 small red bell pepper, diced 2-3 cloves garlic, minced 2-3 tbsp chili powder 2 tbsp soy sauce 1 tsp sugar 2 bay leaves Salt and pepper to taste 2 cans stewed tomatoes 1 can kidney beans (do not drain the liquid) 2 tbsp corn starch, mixed with 4 tbsp water

Lawai‘a- Gear Guys and Fine Vendors

New Maui Fishing Supply 1823 Wells Street #4 Wailuku, HI 96793 808-244-3449

Ewa Beach Buy & Sell 91-775 C Papipi Road Ewa Beach, HI 96706 808-689-6368

Nanko Fishing Supply 46-003 Alaloa St Kaneohe, HI 96744 Phone:(808) 247-0938

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

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

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

Nervous Water Fly Fishers 3434 Waialae Ave. Honolulu, Hi 96816 808-734-7359

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

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

J. Hara Store 3221 Waialae Ave. Honolulu, Hi 96816 808-737-7702

Nico’s Pier 38 Fish Market 1129 N. Nimitz Hwy Honolulu, Hi 96817 808-540-1377

Mark’s Place 1610 Halekuhana St. Lihue, Hi 96766 808-245-2522

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

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

POP Fishing & Marine 1133 N. Nimitz Hwy Honolulu, Hi 96817 808-537-2905

King Fort Magazine 1122 Fort St. Honolulu, Hi 96813 (808) 538-0266

Sawada Store 132 N Cane St. Wahaiwa, Hi 96796 (808) 622-4861

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

Tamashiro Market 802 N. King St. Honolulu, Hi 96817 808-841-8047

MAUI All About Fish 3600 Lower Honoapiilani Rd Lahaina, HI 96761 (808) 669-1710 Maui Sporting Goods 92 Market Street Wailuku, HI 96793 808-244-0011

Charley’s Fishing Supply, Inc. 670 Auahi St., #A10 Honolulu, HI 96813 808-528-7474

Tanioka’s Seafood and Catering 94-903 Farrington Hwy Waipahu, Hi 96797 808-671-3779 Waipahu Bicycle & Sporting Goods 94-320 Waipahu Depot St. Waipahu, Hi 96797 808-671-4091 Westside Dive & Tackle 94-615 Kupuohi St. Waipahu, Hi 96797 808-228-2295 GUAM Blu Wave Tackle 153 Marine Corps Dr. Ste 140 Chamorro Village Hagatna, Guam 96910-5060 671-475-9238 SAIPAN Mariana Fishing Tackle & Sporting Goods Beach Road, Susupe P.O. Box 500726 Saipan, MP 96950 670-234-6320

North Shore Place Names: Kahuku to Ka‘ena Author John Clark’s fascinating look at Hawai‘i’s past, told through the stories hidden in its place names.

UNIVERSITY OF HAWAI‘I PRESS HONOLULU, HAWAI‘I 96822-1888 www.uhpress.hawaii.edu/ 14




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


I have heard of a new lure called a “Micro Jig”. Do you know what they are? How do you use them?

carrying a unique action. Jigs weighted at the ends tend to fall straighter

which replicates dying prey. Micro jigs also excel in their ability to target

and “flatter” on free fall while jigs with a heavier center mass tend to flutter

specific sections of the water column. I have been carrying an assortment

and move more as they drift downward. Curved shapes “zig-zag” as they fall

of them at my store and I am still learning to unleash their potential myself.

and are retrieved. Like their vertical jigging counterparts, there are many

I’ll be sure to keep you all posted on my progress.

other variations with more on the way as this technique grows and increases in popularity.


What a coincidence!

Sometime last year a friend of mine, Tom, turned me on to this product. I honestly hadn’t heard of it before and got a major schooling in their use and application. Tom now lives in Tahiti but still visits his old stomping grounds here and has had fantastic success in Hawaii and Tahiti with them for a few years now. The pictures of his catches on micro jigs were amazing. Papio, Akule, Ulua, Uku and just about any species that will take a lure were on

Getting back to our question at hand, “How do you fish them?” Well, there are many techniques and they vary of course with the jig design, water conditions and target species. Most commonly, micro jigs are dropped vertically and either jigged back towards the surface or cycled in a jig and drop manner. The jigs are usually retrieved upward fairly quickly though some may choose to jig and drop the lure using the rod only. My friend Tom chooses to cast and retrieve the lures from shore using a couple of pumps followed by a drop of about 3 or 4 feet. Ideal rods tend to be light at the tip and very fast in taper with significant power in the lower sections. These are usually paired with quick ratio reels filled with a braided line, although monofilament is often used as well. Whatever style you choose, the magic here is in the free fall and its flutter

his camera. Tom is so sold on them, it’s all he uses. I was immediately convinced and had to learn more about them. Chris Wright, the runner up on reality television’s Top Hooker series is also a hard core believer with many amazing catches as well. Digging deeper, here’s what I found…. First of all, what is a micro jig? As the name suggests, one might assume a micro jig would be quite small and, while micro jigs can weigh as a few grams, they are available in sizes over 80 grams. (There are approx. 28 grams to the ounce.) Size here is relative, as a 50 gram jig in a 70lb tuna wouldn’t be very large. Most micro jigs are basically smaller, shorter versions of the popular vertical or “knife style” jigs. They are typically less than 28 grams and are usually rigged with one or two assist hooks at the front ring, though there may be variations in hook type and placement. While a micro jig shares the profile of


old adage of a big bait for a bigger fish is often true, the flutter of a micro jig sends predatory instincts



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into overdrive! Many a large prize has been landed on these tiny treasures, adding to their mystique and allure. Give them a try and they may become your favorite lure too.


Quinn Ab

subscribers to WIN

a vertical jig, there are many different designs, each

Today’s tip: Don’t be afraid to use a small micro jig when targeting a larger fish. While the



Lawaia Issue

13.indd 1



EN 201






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Reader Tips

Community Outreach



Here’s a tip if you fish with people who want to sit on your cooler and you always find the cooler lid smashed. Spray “The Great Stuff” Foam Gap Filler, or any type of spray insulating foam sealant, that you get from the hardware store in your cooler lid to strengthen it. I work at a home building product supplier and noticed that some of the newer homes were getting insulated with spray foam. We sell “The Great Stuff” that customers are using to insulate plumbing and it looks very similar. I sit on my coolers because I don’t want to bring a chair to my fishing spot, especially since it’s a far walk. Most of the lids on my coolers were hollow until I bought a higher priced cooler. I just put the two together and decided to insulate the lids. Drill 2 to 3 holes along the edge at opposite sides of the lid. Make sure to drill at least 2 holes to fit the applicator straw with each hole on opposite ends so that air can escape. Otherwise, the lid will trap air and expand and it’s possible that the lid can split open. Let the foam spill out of the holes to make sure you’ve filled the lid as much as possible. Trim or clean off the excess. Once completed, your cooler also keeps ice longer. I’ve done this to all of my coolers and it works great. The first cooler lid that I did already had small holes that fit the hose on “The Great Stuff”. It worked really well. I could sit on the lid and the cooler works better in direct sunlight. I still have that cooler. I’ve seen guys sit on their cooler and just ruin the lids. So that’s when I posted on the 808shorecasters Facebook page. I was sure that people in the construction industry know this too but I’ve never seen a post. I was trying to help the fishing community out because we know some of our friends don’t have chairs too when they come fishing and decide to sit on your cooler. Have a great day and enjoy.

This summer Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i


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

Dedicated to Hawai‘i’s fishing community 18


participated in an exciting and thrilling adventure at the Pu‘u Lua Reservoir in Koke‘e, Kaua‘i. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide one-on-one mentorship and create a positive, lasting impact on Hawai‘i’s children by sharing friendship and guidance and support to children facing adversity. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i provides opportunities to engage in activities that build self confidence, teamwork and resiliency in the children we serve. The “Bigs” (mentors) and “Littles” (mentees) were told months in advance about the “Catch & Release” Fishing Expedition that would take place in the summer. The build up to the field trip was paramount! In preparation for the event, Case Manager Nicole Cowan facilitated and presented activities that centered around “Resiliency” and talked about how some times in life we “Catch” or face adversities and how we “Release” or overcome them is what makes a difference in our lives. The children discussed healthy ways to overcome trials and tribulations that are a part of life and this all lead to the Big Day at Pu‘u Lua Reservoir! It was heartwarming to see the kids come together to help those that were not able to catch any trout. “I’ll catch one for you,” said Little Brother Blayne as ahe noticed another Little Brother in tears because he was having difficulty catching a fish himself. Before you knew it… many of the other children were jumping in to help. The smiles on the children’s faces after having caught a trout were priceless. The children could not have experienced such a wonderful day without the many volunteers and partners that came together to make the “Catch & Release” event a memorable experience for the children. Avid fisher and Regional Board Member for Big

Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘I, Mark Oyama, was instrumental in putting in motion the plans and organization for the day. Mark Sueyasu who oversees the Reservoir was there with his team of volunteers to teach the children how to fish responsibly and safely while caring for their environment. In fact, the children were each limited to 5 fish to take home and share with their families. The children were thrilled and you could hear them say things like, “I can’t wait to cook this fish for my family tonight!” Some of the children had never fished in their lives before and others had never been to Koke‘e. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i is extremely grateful to the many people that came together to create this memorable and magical experience for the children. A Prevent Child Abuse Hawaii grant in partnership with the Department of Health made it possible for the organization to provide bus transportation, supplies, activities and snacks for day. Mahalo to Rodney and Raylene from Izuo Brothers and Pacific Island Fisheries Group for their extremely generous donations of fishing rods and reels that the children were able to use not only that day, but for many fishing expeditions in the future! In addition to the fishing equipment, they even donated great prizes for every child even though they may not have caught the largest trout! When Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kaua‘i reflects on those in our community who truly embrace the mission of supporting Keiki, we think of Mark Oyama. Besides organizing and spear heading this special event, he also donated all of the yummy hamburgers, hotdogs, chips, watermelon, juice and ono food! Thank you to the many volunteers who woke up very early on a Saturday morning to participate and share in the fun that day. The children were beside themselves with excitement, enthusiasm and appreciation knowing that there are folks out there who truly care about their wellbeing and need to just be kids and have fun! Remember…

“To the world you may be one person; but to one person you may be the world” ISSUE NINETEEN 2015


Tournament B Y R AY M O N D W E S T B R O O K

Winners of the Waianae, Oahu Family”n”Friends Tournament, Total Weight 455.4 lbs. Captain - Justin Ono BoatName-Kami-Kaze Total of 3 Ahi, 1 Ono Biggest Ono 23.4 lbs. Captain - Andy Green Boat Name - Jenny G

Biggest Marlin 201.4 lbs. Captain - Ryan Nishikawa Boat Name-Kacy K

Biggest Mahi 23.6 lbs. Captain Keoni Keaulana Boat Name - Noname




Biggest Ahi 212.8 lbs. Captain - Matt Cabjuan Boat Name-Carol C I I





The two recipients of the donations were Punualii and Pulikikaua Kahanu, who have duchenne, a muscular disease. They are sons of Earl Jr. and Tracy Kahanu. We of Family”n”Friends are very proud of what we did for these two young men. Our nonprofit organization is moving forward to the next challenge to take on.








OIO CATEGORY: 1st Place: Lawai Kaiwi (9.45#) 2nd Place: Isaiah Tomacder (7.0#) 3rd Place: Randall Takenaka (4.75#) PAPIO CATEGORY: 1st Place: Chad Valmoja (8.7#) 2nd Place: Cale Fernandez (7.65#) 3rd Place: Joseph Silva (5.7#) 24



ULUA CATEGORY: 1st Place : Randall Takenaka (51.7#) 2nd Place: Jaresen Jaramillo (50.6#) 3rd Place: Kevin Pongasi (29.4#)






The last few months, I’ve been on a pursuit of finding the state’s meanest poke. It has taken me to some serious hole in the walls and this one may just be the holiest of the holes.



Keeaumoku Seafood has long been regarded, by those in the know, as one of the ono-est places to get fresh poke by the pound. Named after its location off Keeaumoku Street, in a tiny 5 store strip mall just south of the H1, they have slowly been gaining a following. Reggie and wife Lylanie (Lanie) Tagalicod took over the business approximately 4 years ago from Kyung Cha, the owner of Kyung’s Seafood on King Street, continuing the tradition of fresh, never frozen. It was of the utmost importance to the Tagalicods upon taking the place over. “Most of our customers are repeat customers who know poke quality,” says Lanie. “Our fish is handpicked to meet our customer’s demand for quality. We use large sized, sashimi grade quality on all our poke and sashimi platters. Always fresh from the auction block. Never frozen.” With just 8 parking stalls, capped at 20 minutes apiece, scoring a stall here is not easy, but when the poke is this good and this reasonable, you find a way. On this occasion, we picked up an assortment of items off their regular menu including their Super Deluxe Sashimi Salad ($13.95), Ahi Belly Plate Combo ($10.95), Sashimi Salad ($10.95), and super popular Poke Plate ($10.95). “With the Poke Plate, you get two choices of poke, kim chee, taegu and a free drink,” says Lanie. “Our Spicy Ahi, Sesame Oil, Shoyu, & House Special Poke are among the all time favorite poke choices.” You can also get these in popular bowl form with the 1 choice Poke Bowl going for only $7.99 and the 2 choice “Super Bowl” going for just a couple more bucks at $9.99. They also offer Ahi Blocks, Dry Ahi (which they dry themselves), and Hawaiian Combo Plates (Lau Lau, Kalua Poke & Poke) among other items. If affordably priced, super fresh seafood is what you’re looking for, make the effort and find this hole in the wall. Your taste buds and pocketbook will thank you.

Poke plate

Ahi belly plate combo

Sashimi salad

Keeaumoku Seafood / 1223 Keeaumoku Street Honolulu, HI 96814 / (808) 942-7792





Fish Stories (Barbless Circle Hook)

(Barbless Circle Hook)


Fish Stories

The Family That Fishes Together Catches Together BY CARRIE ASUNCION



A Two-for-One Catch! AT L A PA C F I S H I N G C L U B T O U R N A M E N T




to Annette at Division of Aquatic Resources (808) 587-0087. Include the tag number, general location and forktail length at a minimum but you can also mention condition of the fish, weight, and any fishing/ weather conditions at the time of your catch. Also, keep in mind that tags might be buried in the flesh of the fish so look in the area under the dorsal fin if you end up cleaning and eating your catch.


ahu’s Atlapac Fishing Club held a members only tournament on June 13 and 14, 2015. Member Dan Meheula’s 29.7 lb ulua took first place. Mitchell Taketa caught the second place ulua with a barbless hook (of course!) and it came with a Division of Aquatic Resources Papio/Ulua Tagging Project tag. It weighed 18.4 lbs. Mitchell was a bit disappointed that he needed to weigh in the fish, as he normally likes to release what he catches. Five minutes after catching that first fish, however, he caught another ulua that weighed almost the same. He was very happy to release the second fish. After the tournament, Mitchell emailed the tag information to Annette Tagawa at DAR. The data showed that it was a fish that Mitchell himself had originally tagged on August 11, 2013! When he released it back then, it measured 26 inches and, by Mitchell’s own record, it weighed 12 lbs. Since then, it had gained 4 inches and 4 lbs. That was a significant gain in both, according to Annette. Congratulations, Mitchell, on your two-for-one ulua catch and may you have many more! We hope that other anglers don’t forget that if you catch a tagged papio or ulua, you can still call in the information

t was a last minute fishing trip with my ohana on Saturday April 11, at our favorite spot in Kau. Charles said since I never fish for ulua and usually only small game that this trip was going to be all me. He taught me how to set up the ulua pole with a rub line and my bimini knot. I slid down a kupipi which was held on using a rubber band. The kupipi was caught by Braddah Jesse. It was around 11:50 pm and we were just about dozing off when the bell started ringing. I jumped up. Charles was like “Ohhh, you get one ulua!” As it was pulling, I thought to myself that it was a fighter for sure. Since I never fish for uluas, Charles guided me on fighting it, telling me “boost it”, ”reel, reel”, “no let it run”, “give em!” lolz. It took about 5 minutes to bring it in for Braddah Jesse to gaff. I was stoked! We gave everyone high-fives and took a few pictures! My first ulua and my first ulua on barbless! The hook was a 14/0 barbless from the barbless folks. Charles said it was a nice size for my first ulua so we kept it and made a good meal. We usually cut up the uluas and make smoked sausage or fry it with mayonnaise and panko. We share it with the family and more so with da family we go down with. I have been fishing from when I was about 4 years old with my dad and from then on I have always loved fishing. Even if we didn’t get anything it was just about having fun. My daughter, in the picture with us, has been on every fishing trip since she was 3 months old. Now she is a year and a month old. Teaching her young! Thank you for letting me share my story!

t was a long work week for me. The family helped load up the fishing gear and we set out for a fun weekend of fishing and camping with good company at our fishing spot in Kau. Once we got there we set out our poles and I slid out a live “kupipi” for bait. Thanks to my brother Jesse for catching my bait! I used a 16/0 barbless hook with a rubber band to hold the bait on and sent it down. Now it was just the waiting game. Suddenly at 5:30 pm, the bell started ringing in the distance. I was only in rubber slippers and I ran to the poles. Half way there my slippers broke! So bare foot it was. Reached the pole, took off my tie down and bell and the fight was on! He gave a few hard runs but I just held on and boosted! It took me about 3 minutes to get the fish to gaff. Then I heard my brother yelling, “let um run! We no more enough rope!” as he starts running to get the other 50 foot rope. I kept the fish at the front, trying to keep it away from the sharp rocks so it didn’t cut. I finally saw my brother coming with the two ropes. About a minute later he tied them together and sent the gaff down. He gaffed the fish and brought it up to the top edge of the 80 foot cliff. All of a sudden the fish fell! Luckily, I kept my drag on free spool and the ulua hit the water! Just when I thought I lost it, I tightened my drag and it was still on! So my brother again slid the gaff and gaffed it better this time, trying not to hit the gills or organs for the release. He brings it up to the top of the cliff and I snapped a few pics with the family then took out the easy to remove 16/0 barbless hook. I tossed it back to grow for another fight. I would like to say “mahalos” to the Barbless Circle Hook project for the hooks! Got them at the 2014 Tokunaga Ulua Challenge! We must take home only what we can eat; can’t keep them all. We must save for the children and their children to come! Happy fishing to all of you and remember tight lines!




A Fishing Day for Dad



stickbait lure and started bombing away. By then Sera had eaten half a bag of Doritos and started her sea shell collection. About three-quarters of a juice pouch later, it happens... the ocean explodes as my lure gets T-boned about 40 yards out. The rod goes flat as line starts to peel off the reel and I slam the rod back a couple times to drive the hooks in deep. Sera hears the commotion and screams, “Is it a big fish, daddy?” and rushes to my side as I crank down the drag and start to lay back into the rod, trying to slow the run down. “I dunno, but it’s not stopping!” I say and show her the



packed enough snacks and juice pouches to hold off a six year old for a couple hours and she insisted we bring a couple of her favorite My Little Pony to keep us company. This past Father’s Day I took Sera on her first Ulua Popping adventure. We got to the spot about 5pm and found a nice area where she could hang out in the sand while I cast from the nearby reef’s edge. I setup my GT Fight Club Evolution rod to be able to cast smaller lures which would be more manageable with her around. I slapped on a Daiwa Catalina 4000h reel spooled with 50# braid then tied on a 65gr Sea Falcon

line disappearing off the spool. After a while the initial run starts to slow down and I’m able to make some big boosts and gain some line back, only to lose it again as the fish digs. This tug-of-war goes on for about ten minutes and I can feel my arms start to burn while massive head shakes buckle the rod over. Sera’s screaming, “Go daddy, pull!”… Oh man, this feels like a good size fish and the pressure is on not to lose it! I’m expecting it to end in disappointment at any moment, but miraculously, everything holds up and I’m finally able to bring the fish up close against the ledge. I time a wave to boost the fish up and over into the shallows and pin it up against the rocks. I hand the rod over to Sera and scramble down to the water to grab the leader and quickly cradle the fish. This fish is a tank. It takes me a couple tries to lift the fish up and carry it into a nearby tide pool. I am speechless as I step back to get a good look at the size of this ulua. It measures 47 inches

and I approximate the weight in the high 60 pound range. After hugs and high-fives we quickly take a bunch of photos. Sera gives the ulua one last goodbye pat as I carry it back out into the water. She’s able to snap a cool photo of me releasing it. In a few moments the ulua regains its balance then peacefully it swims back out into the surf. I’m delighted to have shared this unforgettable moment with my daughter and I thank that ulua for letting me be the hero… Mahalo, catch you laters.



Fish Stories

Fish Stories


Oio On The Flats…By Torching!

Aku From Shore


hen the conditions are right, Randy Manzano and sons like to go torching on the south side of Oahu. They usually catch nice things to eat and use as bait for later fishing trips but on this night, they had a couple of unusual catches. One fish was especially unusual and you can read about in our “What Is It” section of this issue. The other unusual catch was an oio that came along with a bonus. It’s not unusual for Randy and his sons to come across oio that they can three-prong in the shallows and the oio on this trip was a very nice sized one at about 11 lbs. This one, however, was found in less than 1 foot of water and the unusual thing was that it still had a small, plastic minnow-type lure in its mouth!





Not knowing I had an audience, I heard an old couple clapping and cheering so I held the fish up to them!


t was Sunday June 7th, 2015 and a family day down at Turtle Bay on the North Shore. I didn’t bring a lot of gear; jus’ my 10’ plugging pole and my 8’6 medium/heavy Shakespeare Wild Series with a Shimano Stradic FJ 4000 with 8 lb main. We got to the spot and set up tent. Everyone was eventually sitting down, relaxing; kids playing in the water. As for me, I was setting up my poles! So I rigged up my Shakespeare rod with a bubble rig made up of 5’ of 15 lb fluorocarbon leader, size 6 AH hook with a 2-1/2 inch “obake” curly tail! I started whipping and walking for awhile but no bites! By then I was quite a ways from where I started! Ready to walk back, I decided to give it another try but without the bubble. So I took the bubble float off and tied on a 1/2 oz. egg lead and started whipping! On the 2nd cast while I was reeling in, I noticed something kind of big and very dark in color going for my lure. I slowed down my retrieval and gave my pole a jerking motion! Den I had dat feeling where I thought I was stuck so I gave my pole jerk. Dats when line started to peel out of my reel and the fight was on! My thought at first was “Holy crap, this is a big papio,” not knowing what it was. All I knew was it was fighting hard and it was heavy! I was thinking I might lose the fish, the way it was fighting! I would bring it in and then it would take off with 5 yards of line, going left, going right! Even as I brought it close, I couldn’t make out what it was cuz of the white wash. I was determined to bring it in! So as the next big swell came in, I reeled in, put my rod tip down and pulled when the swell came in! As the water receded on the rocks I was surprised to see what I thought was a kawakawa! But as I took a better look at it while I was taking out the hook, I was more surprised, saying to myself, “Holy crap, I caught an aku!”. Not knowing I had an audience, I heard an old couple clapping and cheering so I held the fish up to them! As I put my catch in my fish bag, I decided to throw again. This time the same thing happened but now there were 4-5 dark blue shadows following. So I did the same thing and, boom, the line started screaming out! I thought to myself, “Here we go again!” But this time the fish won! As I was ready to bring the fish in, the hook shook off and he was gone! Nonetheless, it was a great and memorable moment and experience. As I got back to camp, my family was shocked and very surprised at what I caught! Not very many people can say they caught an aku from shore!




This is the last in a series of three articles by Scott Haraguchi describing the trials and misadventures of a fisherman looking for any fishing platform to hanapa‘a on. The articles span his high school days on a barely sea worthy mini-tanker, to Southern California fishing on rental skiffs and kayaks, to his return to Hawaii to fish from a modern longboard. He’s found that “Oahu still get fish, really.”


n 2007, after 20 years in California, I married an amazing local girl and moved back to Oahu. As I visited the beaches I had board fished in the 80s, I wondered if there were still fish around. I was surprised that hardly anyone fished off surfboards anymore. With the invention of fishing kayaks, there was no need to dangle your feet in the water and imitate turtles. The idea of fishing off a modern epoxy longboard resonated with me because of the easy transport, and the limited carrying capacity forced me to keep things simple. I liked that fishing on a surfboard connected me with my past. Instead of being the crazy kid trying to fish off a leaky tanker I would now be the crazy uncle fishing off a longboard with modern equipment. The idea of attracting sharks with my fluttering feet have kept me within the safety of the shallow reef. Instead of gearing up with HI specific tackle I surveyed what I had brought back from Califonia. I had a couple inshore level wind bait casting setups I used on the kayak and figured they’d also work here. The big swimbaits and iron jigs didn’t mimic the inshore bait fish well so I started with scent impregnated lures because I didn’t want to deal with perishable bait. Problem was they only attracted hinalea and po‘opa‘a. I was about to quit fishing altogether and blame my poor catch on depleted resources but decided to put in a little more effort. The scent impregnated lures were dropped in favor of cut ika and shrimp and I found that cut bait trumps fake bait. The bait caster with fluorocarbon line was awesome to drag bait but when my sliding egg sinker rig snagged it was gnarly to free the line before a wave hit me. I ended up using a weedless tungsten weight and hook that bass fishermen use, and snagged a lot less.










Tired of spooking the few oama around, I got on my board to throw the Waxwing on the inner reef papas. I tried to fish the productive oama trolling spots and sure enough, those few spots were much more productive than the rest of the general area. It was a lot easier to cast a lure out into the surf impact zone than it was to drag a live oama through it, and the fish that hit were larger than the ones that hit oama last year. I even caught a 5 lb oio in the surf with the 3.5”, 7/8 oz subsurface Waxwing! I had set the drag pretty tight to set the hook, and the fish pulled line off in spurts like a large papio. I was looking for the electric blue of an omilu and was shocked to see a gray 5 lb oio hooked on the top of his head by both double hooks. It was released with a slight headache. Under the right conditions, fishing is better at my old spots now than it was 30 years ago. It just takes some time to learn each spot’s unique secrets. In general, these were the optimal fishing conditions to fish the inner reef: • 1st hour of the day and last 1.5 hrs of the day or low light conditions when predators are ambushing prey • First 2/3 of a large rising tide • First 1/3 of a large falling tide • Cool, moving water, not sun-warmed water • Stable barometric pressure, avoid fishing before a storm • Live or fresh bait • Active lure retrieved near bait schools

Scott writes a fishing blog focused on Oahu’s nearshore fishing. Check out his fishing reports and tips to make your fishing outings more productive. http://www.hawaiinearshorefishing.com/


After logging my fishing trip conditions, I realized my catch rate of moana, papio and oio improved when certain conditions aligned. Then the epic oama season of 2014 arrived. The oama began to trickle in around mid-June. I was a pretty lousy oama fisherman but there were so many oama with so little fishing pressure that I slowly began to catch some. I kept the oama alive in large plastic tubs with external filtration, which was harder to accomplish than catching them in the first place. Eventually I figured out how to keep them parasite free and some lived for months. I didn’t land a legal papio on a board while I trolled with oama for a whole month. There were so many baitfish past the reef that the papio didn’t have to come inside the break where I fished, and those that did were juveniles themselves. My oamas were scratched up by baby papio, yanked off by large aha, and cut in half by kaku. It wasn’t until September that the papio were swallowing the live oama. On the good days, every oama would get hit, even the dead ones, but there were a lot of missed strikes and small fish landed. Most papio were in the 10 inch (head to fork of tail) to 12 inch size, which led to a lot of released fish. The oama season of 2014 extended into October and had been a great learning experience. Then, the near shore water cooled and the adolescent bait fish left the shallows. I went back to wade fishing and became fascinated with the way the Shimano Waxwing lure swam just a few inches below the surface. I tried the red Powerpro as Shimano recommended but ran into issues using braid with light Waxwings on a bait caster. Stubbornly I tried to find a way to whip with a bait caster instead of the popular spinning reel setup and ending up using castable fluorocarbon as my top shot. (see Shimano Waxwing System Review on page 40) The 2015 oama season started much slower than the previous year.



Shimano Waxwing System







himano introduced their Waxwing System at the 2010 ICAST show and the associated Terez rod, Trinidad A reel and Waxwing lure won their respective categories. The Terez line of rods were designed to fish PowerPro braid with high speed spinning (Stella SW, Sustain, Stradic) and casting (Trinidad A, Curado 300EJ) reels but the biggest buzz was around the Waxwing lure itself. Well it’s 2015 and the Waxwing buzz has faded a bit. Waxwings are still available but Shimano has focused marketing attention on their deadly Orca top water plugs, and flat fall Butterfly jigs. I read some old reviews and found the Waxwing intriguing. The lure was designed to cast far, and be retrieved without any rod movement. Its upper wing created its pronounced zig zag movement and its lower wing and upturned, rear double hook allowed the lure to climb over obstacles a lure with treble hooks would snag. Waxwings now come in three models: original Sinking, Suspending and Freshwater. I chose the denser Sinking model because I wanted to cast as far as possible, in windy conditions. In the Spring, I tried the 3.5”, 7/8 oz “Boy” size and it cast like a bullet in the light wind conditions. The rear, double hook folded back on the tail of the lure as it sailed without tumbling. Its retrieve was even more impressive. I was using a saltwater level-wind bait casting setup and just pointing the rod tip at the lure, cranking at a medium-fast tempo. Every time I cranked a little harder, the lure would kick out a bit more. I didn’t even get a follow on that initial trial but the lure definitely looked fishy. Since I mainly fish the shallow reef flats I downsized to the 2.68”, 1/2 oz “Baby” size, hoping the predators would find it bite-sized. The Baby cast very well for a 1/2 oz plug and bounced over rock piles as long as I kept the speed up. The small white papio and undersized kaku followed and attacked it but the upturned hook made it difficult to hook small fish that attacked from below. There were a lot of follows and missed strikes but not many hookups. I replaced the stock double hook with a shorter, stronger, sharper double hook and added an assist hook tied to the eye of the lure. Hookup ratio increased and small papio, kaku and moana were caught, but I still had more looks than strikes. Turns out I wasn’t using the rest of the Waxwing System that Shimano recommended. My bait casting reel had a slow retrieve ratio and I was casting fluorocarbon that had line coil “memory”.




There was a reason Shimano marketed the high speed Curado 300EJ bait caster spooled with red PowerPro as part of the system. The 300EJ retrieved 32” of line per turn, almost 10 inches more than the reel I was using. Red braid was suggested because red is the first color to fade in the water column, completely fading out to gray at 14 feet. Braid casts better than mono and fluorocarbon and with a thinner diameter and no stretch the Waxwing’s zig zag was exaggerated. Casting distance improved with the new line, and the reel’s retrieve was so fast I had to slow down so I wouldn’t skip the lure on the surface. On my second cast with the new, recommended rig, I hooked a 14” kaku smack in its mouth because it couldn’t race ahead and strike the lure in its hook-less belly. The Waxwing is ideal for use with a high speed spinning reel, I just happen to like bait casting gear. Friends fishing the Waxwing with long spinning rods and braid were able to cast much further than I was and caught fish once they got the right speed and tempo down. Although the Waxwing is very aerodynamic for a swimming plug, casting the smallest Baby into the wind with braid on my bait caster caused endless backlashes. I ended up removing some of the braid and loading castable fluorocarbon (Seaguar Invzx) as a top shot and was back in business. When Summer rolled around, the larger predators moved onto the reef to chase juvenile bait fish and the Waxwing Baby proved irresistible. They were inhaling the 2.68” lure so I no longer needed the assist hook. Other local favorites like Kastmasters, poppers and Crystal Minnows attracted their share of bites, but the Waxwing outcast most, was exciting to watch as it swum just under the surface, and proved to be almost snag-free. On a shallow flats fishing outing, my fishing buddy, Kris, and I had a lure shoot out. He was armed with a bubble & grub, a Crystal Minnow and a spinning rod/reel. I stuck with the Black/Chrome Waxwing Baby and my bait caster. We walked out on the flats up to our waist and the bubble & grub was on fire. Kris caught 5 small omilu and I hadn’t had a single bump. A half-hour before sunset we fished the muddy 15” deep water from shore where we could see baby mullet and aholehole huddling up for safety. The grub stopped working so Kris put on his shallow diving Crystal Minnow. It dove too deep and fouled on limu. My Waxwing Baby



easily cast beyond the ambushing predators and ran a few inches below the surface. Kaku boiled on it and a 14” white papio was solidly hooked. Kris conceded the shoot out and I gave him an identical Black/ Chrome Waxwing Baby. He brought in an 18” kaku and we missed some much larger ones. The dusk bite didn’t last long but the shallow water surface strikes were very memorable. Buoyed by this successful outing we sought out a shallow, rocky area with a few sandy coves. Baby mullet and aholehole were present and oama, fresh from the deep, warily swam in a tight pack. Once again, the Black/Chrome Baby drew strikes from small kaku and white papio. Even the Ghost Blue Shad in the 3.5”, 7/8 oz “Boy” size worked. When the action slowed, a small moi hit the Black/Chrome Baby just before dark. The final test was to see how the Waxwing would perform out at the surf break from my fishing longboard. Both the Baby and Boy sized lures in the Blue Sardine pattern cast well without needing much line extending from the rod tip, and zig zagged nicely because my rod was almost touching the water. The Waxwing proved its versatility by not only catching a 15” omilu, but also catching a 5lb oio in the surf! How many subsurface lures can make that claim! In just a few inshore outings, kaku, white papio, omilu, oio, moi, moana, needlefish, cornetfish and poopaa have been caught on the Waxwing Baby and Boy. Larger sized Waxings have been reported to be very effective on offshore species.


• Casts well, not tiring to retrieve • Very enticing zig zag swimming action • Deadly in shallow water situations • Practically snag-proof • Durable, hard body


• $15 for Baby size, $18 for Boy size • Needs to be retrieved relatively quickly • Hook is soft and not that sharp


• Fish near bait schools • Use loop knot or clip to allow lure to swing freely • Point rod tip low and towards lure to keep lure from breaking the surface • Use crank-crank-crank-pause cadence • If you’re getting follows but no strikes, speed up your retrieve I’d like to thank the folks at Charley’s Fishing Supply for discussing the best times to use certain color patterns, lure size and creative ways to increase hookup ratio. The Waxwings are available at POP Fishing & Marine and Charley’s Fishing Supply as well as other fishing tackle retailers.



“Necessity is the mother of invention” is the most recent proverb pulled from a Chinese takeout fortune cookie by our 5-year-old. Having recently brought to market our latest invention, it was as if we had been given wisdom from heaven; that all our hard work would indeed pay off. Clearly, that little white crumpled tag was worthy to be posted to Nitta Fishing Innovation’s Instagram account with the hashtag #truth.


Frustration was the genesis of our first invention, the N3 Harness. Most fishermen can recall their beginning days of fishing, as they trolled their “money” or “magic” lures, only to watch the boats next to them pull in fish after fish. We quickly discovered that being one dimensional in fishing will have you fishing a lot more than catching. We wanted fish on the deck, and we knew that we needed more tools and methods, especially when the fish were finicky.  Lucky for us, we were in the presence of generous fishermen who were willing to share that they were trolling dead bait. That was

the “aha” moment, where we knew we needed to change our game. We needed to use bait… but the only problem was, we weren’t sure how. Thankfully, in the world of technology, a few clicks here, a few clicks there, and you have an all access pass into the “how to” world of almost anything. Our search engine was running on “how to rig dead bait” fuel for days. Easy enough, so it seemed, but twenty minutes of rigging a single fish, only to watch it disintegrate in Hawaii’s rough ocean waters, was defeating us. We realized that the many holes we created while trying to determine the hook position in the fish weakened the belly of the ballyhoo and blew it out quicker than a predator could even sense its presence in the water. We knew we needed to find a better way to rig bait.

Closeup of the N-3 harness rig






It’s a joke in our home that CEO of Nitta Fishing Innovations Gye Nitta has a circus in his head. But out of that circus came the N3 and R3 baiting system. While fishing one day with ballyhoo, Gye was once again frustrated with the tedious wiring and puncturing of the bait with the hook. There had to be a way to keep the hook outside the fish, Gye thought. He made his way to the local hardware store and created a harness out of simple materials. The true test of whether the bait would last would once again be Hawaii’s ocean. Gye and his fishing partner, Sid Yim (co-owner of NFI), threw the harnessed bait overboard and BAM! HANA PA‘A!!  From that moment on, Sid and Gye refined the product to what it is today.   The N3 Harness is the world’s most versatile and efficient bait rig. It provides fishermen with a new rigging method that does not puncture bait. Bait lasts impressively



longer, many times up to 12 hours. Because the hook is outside the fish, hook placement can be easily changed at any time to a better striking position. “It’s three easy steps: attach your hook, place the bait in the harness, and secure it with the band,” says Gye.   But even after presenting the N3, the question of how to rig the front of the fish often came up. Gye and Sid created the R3 Front Rig, a fast and easy compression rig that simulates dead bait coming back to life. Its versatility allows even beginning fishermen to rig most bait fish, including ballyhoo, akule and opelu. Since the R3 hit the market in July 2015, many Hawaii fishermen say they are “believers” after catching many pelagic fish with the system.   The N3 and R3 bait system can also be used for bottom fishing and with your favorite teasers and flash. For more information and to view the system in action, visit www.nittafishing.com



‘ama‘ama B Y PA U L O

Ala Wai Canal, Honolulu 1950s,

Much of the following article is based on Robert T. Nishimoto, T.E. Shimoda and L.K. Nishiura. 2007. Mugilids in the muliwai: a tale of two mullets. (N.L.Evenhuis & J.M. Fitzsimons, editors) Bishop Museum Bulletin in Cultural and Environmental Studies 3: 143-156. HAWAII STATE ARCHIVES VIRGIL BIGGS








Ala Wai Canal, Honolulu, 1930s


census at the Honolulu fish market in 1900 reported that 35.6% of the fishes sold were the ‘ama‘ama (striped mullet). There was no differentiation, however, between mullet taken from fishponds or the coastal seas. Mullet was the most expensive fish at the market and sold for 25 cents/lb. The ‘ama‘ama, or striped mullet, is a significant species in traditional Hawai‘i. This fish was coveted by royalty, and there are numerous words in the Hawaiian language describing the life stages and migration patterns. The species was cultured in Hawaiian fish ponds and was once a major commercial fish. It is still significant as a food species. The Hawaiian language recognizes the different size classes of the ‘ama‘ama but most intriguing is recognizing the traditional migratory route between ‘Ewa to Lai‘e, O‘ahu. The terms describe the traditional spawning migration and their return. The group of striped mullet, having a full-bodied spawning migration from ‘Ewa to Lai‘e, was called ‘anae-holo. The returning migration of skinny striped mullet from Lai‘e to ‘Ewa was called ‘anaepali. During the reign of King Kamehameha I, it was common for some Hawaiian chiefs to select the swiftest runner to collect the ‘ama‘ama from their favorite fishpond so the fish would still be alive when they returned. Even after the law was changed to allow every commoner access to fish resources, exceptions were made for ‘ama‘ama from Hule‘ia, Anahola and Hanalei on Kaua‘i, which remained taboo to the general population. Fishing for mullet by using local pole-and-line technique is a dying art. This type of fishing, once easily recognized by the numerous, small wooden platforms, called stilt chairs, which dotted the tidal flats in Kane‘ohe Bay, Ala Wai Canal, and Wailupe, is now gone. These wooden chairs were not set randomly. Instead, the locations were carefully selected and placed close to the daily migratory path of the mullet. Bread was used for chumming and as bait. These platforms are now prohibited because of environmental regulations, and more than likely, there is not much interest for perpetuating this fishing technique, considering the absence of the annual ‘anae holo runs along the windward coast of O‘ahu. Small skiffs now replace such platforms. Hilo Harbor, especially the Waiakea Public Fishing Area, is one of the last strongholds of this type of mullet fishing. Fishermen use a system of a delicately balanced bobber and tandem hooks baited with algae, mostly a chained diatom. This




‘ama‘ama Mullet Fishermen Ala Wai Canal






‘ama‘ama Ala Wai Canal, Honolulu, 1930s


fishery was the subject of a very successful stock enhancement project to test the efficacy of marine stock augmentation by releasing hatcheryraised fingerlings. According to a longtime Hawai‘i Fish & Game fishery biologist, the average size of striped mullet caught in the 1940s averaged 3-4 lbs. He noticed a dramatic decline in average size over time and stated that mullet stocks are overfished and the brood stocks severely depleted. He hypothesized that the losses of shallow water nursery habitat and competition from the alien kanda, Valamugil engeli, have contributed to the decline. On O‘ahu, one of most significant impacts causing the decline of the mullet population was the destruction of “Kuapa Fish




Pond” to create what is now known as Hawai‘i Kai Marina. The dredging of channels and building of islands in the pond destroyed much of the mullet’s critical habitat, shallow grazing areas where “pua” or juvenile mullet would feed and hide from predators. Also, with the development of surrounding homes throughout East Honolulu, many freshwater springs were destroyed and no longer contribute to the ecosystem by helping to establish the base of the food chain. The striped mullet is known to penetrate low gradient streams, such as certain streams on Kaua‘i, or where surface flow is absent but with significant groundwater discharge, such as Hilo Harbor. This type of mullet habitat is more common in protected

habitats, especially in estuaries (muliwai). Freshwater inflow to the ocean is key to the presence of ‘anaeholo and its former seasonal runs along the windward coast of O‘ahu. In Hawai‘i, ‘ama‘ama reach sexually maturity at about 28 cm, or about 3 years old. And migrate offshore during the winter months to spawn in the ocean. The pre-juveniles, averaging about 20 mm standard length, appear at intertidal estuarine habitats 30-45 days after hatching at sea. The recruiting fingerlings use turbidity gradients as an orientation cue along with tidal transport as a mechanism to move into juvenile habitats. Pre-juveniles, averaging about 17-35 mm standard length, are very common in the shallow intertidal habitats in the spring

but disappear by the end of June. The fingerlings metamorphose into juveniles at 50 mm standard length, abandon the extreme conditions in the shallows, and move into deeper waters. In the late 1800s, many coastal fishponds were not tended and fell into disrepair as the population migrated to the city or other crops, such as rice and taro, became more profitable. In 1900, there were only 99 documented fishponds, and Chinese immigrants operated most. The number of fishponds used to cultivate ‘ama‘ama and other estuarine species continued declining into the next century. In 2000, there were only two fishponds in production in Hawai‘i. These fishponds collectively sold less than 1,000 lbs of ‘ama‘ama in 2003.

ISSUE NINETEEN 2015 4/29/12 10:14 AM




ummer’s come and gone and we’ve been busy bobbing and weaving the line of hurricanes and storms that have been thrown our way. It’s time to put away the ahi and ulua gear and dust off your bottomfish and oio gear. Don’t forget to share your fishing stories and photos with Lawai‘a magazine so we can join in celebration! Shelter Lodge, Kelsey said, “it really changed my life in the greatest way. Not only did I learn things in the kitchen, but also a lot about myself, how I work with other people, and it made me think about my life. Being away from home and just working on what I want to do, career wise.” Kelsey applied and was interviewed by Lodge manager, Kenji Yamada, for the internship position. Given her positive attitude, great work ethic and maturity, we knew she would excel in this opportunity. PIFG is pleased to have completed its second year of placing summer interns and would like to thank Kenji, Jackie and Richard Yamada and rest of the Shelter Lodge staff for hosting Kelsey this season. It must have been awesome as she boasts, “This was the greatest experience for me that I’ll never forget.” PIFG supports culinary intern at Shelter Lodge

For the second year now, PIFG has supported the placement of a culinary student intern at Shelter Lodge in Juneau, Alaska. Kelsey Cruz, culinary student at Leeward Community College, spent three months this summer working side by side and learning from Shelter Lodge chefs to provide fishing guests three awesome meals every day. Last year, Kelsey was a senior at Kapolei High School and participated in PIFG’s program to bring sustainable fresh fish into the high school culinary program. Reflecting back on this summer’s internship at



Research Project Updates

PIFG continues to lead the way with cooperative fisheries research projects that aim to improve fishery science through partnering of fishermen and scientists. One more ahi satellite tagged! We knew that our project to tag ahi with popup satellite tags was science, but what we didn’t envision was it such an art. People say consistently catching ahi takes knowledge, experience and attention to detail. Everything has got to be done right because the opportunity does not come easy.

Add satellite tagging to this and the precision window gets incredibly small. The placement of the hook, the length of the fight, the size of the fish, the placement of the tag and reliability of the satellite tag all come into play. As a result, there is very little data on long term yellowfin movement around the islands. With all the preparation, training, trials and effort over the past year, PIFG is happy to report that on June 28, 2015, Captain Curtis Matsumura on F/V Keiko M tagged the fourth ahi through our project off of the island of Kauai. Onboard that day was mate Joe Koerte, Dr. Molly Lutcavage and Courtney Buna. Captain Curtis reported that there was a lot of action that day when at 11:30 am they hooked an ahi estimated to be 90-100 lbs (minimum size for tagging is 75 lbs). After a short fight it was brought alongside the vessel, at which time it was determined to be an excellent specimen and worthy of tagging. Satellite tagging expert, Dr. Lutcavage, confirmed the tag placement was good and the leader was cut, letting the ahi swim off in

excellent shape. Congratulations and mahalo to Captain Curtis and the crew of the F/V Keiko M. This brings the ahi tagging project to four large ahi that have been tagged off of Kauai within the last year. We hope the data collected from these tags will assist in learning more about these important species to the Hawaiian Islands. PIFG turns to tournaments to get bio-samples in Guam

The weather finally laid down enough to allow bio samples to be collected during the third quarter (April-June) of this project. With the improved weather and sea conditions, PIFG and Guam Fishermen’s Cooperative Association coordinated three bio–sampling tournaments to bring community awareness and participation to the project. Categories in the tournament focused on species and sizes needed for NOAA life history studies. The number of samples collected during the tournaments was low, but



cooperative research fishing to better understand the complexities of quantifying fishing effort. This year, we are continuing to work on several projects focused on completing day/ night observed bottom fishing trips on Oahu, Maui and Hawaii. Sampling began in March of 2015 and continues through November 2015. These bottomfish trips, which included trained PIFG/NOAA observers, recorded true fishing effort by various participating island bottom fishermen. Critical catch per unit effort (CPUE) information is being collected during each dedicated trip which included the number of hooks, bait type, style or method of fishing, line hours associated with soak time and catch. Other important factors that influence bottomfishing effort were also collected during each drift or

the size class of specimens collected was great and it generated broader interest and community involvement. With improved weather reaching project objectives is now in sight. Cooperative bottomfish research tries to sort out differences and changes in fishing techniques, methods and environment.

The Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC) stock assessment staff have been working with fishermen to better understand how bottomfish fishermen catch bottomfish. Sounds simple right? But when you dig down into the details and try to take into consideration differences between fishermen, changes in seasons, currents, tides and countless other variables, describing bottomfishing as complex just doesn’t do it justice. For several years now PIFG and numerous bottomfish fishermen have been working with PIFSC to conduct



station fished. Throughout the day/night data event current speed and direction, wind speed and direction, and sea height and positionwere being constantly collected by the observers. The data will assist NOAA in better understanding bottomfish operations and seasonality of the fishery throughout the islands. Another continuing project is the Deep 7 Bottomfish Tag Saturation study that began during the early summer months of 2015. A couple fishermen on each island were asked to dedicate bottomfish trips just for tagging within concentrated spots or areas. The design of the project was to saturate tag as many deep 7 species as possible in one area to improve recovery rates and better determine travel and growth rates. Results from this study will be realized over time as recoveries continue. The independent survey sampling part of this project is scheduled to begin in October 2015 and expand from Maui to now include Molokai, Lanai and Penguin Bank. Please note that PIFG contacted bottomfish vessels will be supporting this work in these expanded areas. Future project goals will be to sample the entire MHI including Kauai and the island of Hawaii. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kauai Fishing Day

PIFG partnered with Izuo Brothers, Prevent Child Abuse Hawaii, State of Hawaii Department of Health and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Kauai to take children and mentors of the island’s Big Brothers Big Sisters program on exciting and thrilling fishing day adventure at the Puu Lua Reservoir in Kokee, Kauai. Read more about this great event on page 19 of this issue. Hanapaa!




On Sunday, March 11, 1923,

Kaakaukukui. Kakaako Makai.

the Honolulu Advertiser published a

Kulukuluaeo. Kakaako Makai.

detailed history of the kai lawai‘a, or traditional Hawaiian fisheries, on the island of O‘ahu. The fisheries, which are also known as fishing grounds, were

Kaneloa. Kapiolani Park.

and extended from shore to the outer

Kapua. Kaimana Beach and the New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel.

were located within the boundaries of the ahupua‘a land divisions, and their resources were considered to be part of the productivity of the land. If they were privately-owned, ownership often included legal rights within the kai lawai‘a, such as the exclusive right to catch certain species of fish or to gather certain species of seaweed. The Advertiser article includes a map of Oahu that shows the locations of the individual fisheries. While some of the names are still in use, many are not. The following are the kai lawai‘a from Honolulu Harbor to Maunalua Bay and the places they front today.


Hamohamo. Pacific Beach Hotel and Kuhio Beach Park.

sections of ocean that bordered the island edge of the reef. Individual kai lawai‘a


Kalia. Hilton Hawaiian Village and Fort DeRussy.

Kaluahole. Tongg’s surf spot and Makalei Beach Park. Keauau. Diamond Head Lighthouse. Kuilei. Kuilei Cliffs Beach Park and the surf spot “Cliffs.” Kaalawai. Beach and neighborhood on the west side of Black Point. Kahala. Beach and neighborhood on the east side of Black Point. Waialae. Waialae Beach Park. Waialae Iki. Kahala Hotel. Wailupe. Wailupe Peninsula. Niu. Niu Peninsula Kuliouou. Paiko Drive and Kuliouou Beach Park. Maunalua. Maunalua Bay Beach Park.



The two notices that follow are examples of the hundreds of legal notices in the Hawaiian-language newspapers regarding kai lawai‘a. Ka Nupepa Kuokoa. October 31, 1868.

Ka Makaainana. July 1, 1895.

Olelo Hoolaha

Hookapu Kai Lawaia.

E ike aua nei na kanaka a pau, owau a me na makaainana o Maunalua, ka poe i Hui a

Eia ka hoolahaia aku nei ma keia

hoolimalima i ke awawa kula o Hahaione Kaelekei a me ke kai lawaia e pili ana ma na

hookapuia ka lawaia ana ma ka kai

palena o Maunalua, mai ka lae o Makapuu, Awawamalu, a hiki i ka lae o Kawaihoa, ke

lawaia o Kahala, koe wale no a loaa ka

kai kohola o Koko a me Kaliawa a hiki mai i na palena o Kuliouou koe aku o Hanauma.

aeia mai e

J. H. Kanepuu. Lana Hoolimalima no ka poe Hui. Maunalua, Oahu. Oct. 29, 1868

J. Heleluhe, Agena no ke alii Liliuokalani. Honolulu, Iulai 1, 1895.

Notice May everyone know that I and some others from Maunalua have formed a Hui and

Restricting fishing grounds.

leased the inland valleys of Hahaione and Kaelekei and the fisheries that adjoin

This is to announce that fishing in the

the boundaries of Maunalua, from Makapuu Point, Awawamalu, to Kawaihoa

fishing grounds of Kahala is restricted

Point, including the shallow reef flats of Koko and Kaliawa to the boundaries of

except for those who acquire permits

Kuliouou, but excluding Hanauma [Bay].

from J. Heleluhe. Agent for Queen

J. H. Kanepuu. Representative Lessee for the Hui. Oct. 29, 1868.

Liliuokalani. Honolulu, July 1, 1895.




Recover a Tagged Bottomfish or O‘io? Call (808) 265-4962

Ehu Gindai

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. Species: (The Deep Seven) Opakapaka (Pink Snapper), Onaga (Longtail Snapper), Hapu‘upu‘u (Hawaiian Grouper), Ehu (Squirrelfish Snapper), Kalekale (Von Siebold’s Snapper), Gindai (Brigham’s Snapper), Lehi (Silverjaw Snapper) and Oio (Bonefish).


Reward: In return for your valuable information you’ll receive a special t-shirt reward plus a recovery letter stating how much the fish grew, distance traveled and days at liberty.



For more information about PIFG and its programs, visit www.fishtoday.org 62





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. 64


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 • pop-hawaii.com

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Lawai'a Issue 19  

Lawai'a Issue 19