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Black Coral: History of a Sustainable Fishery in Hawai'i

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Title:Black Coral: History of a Sustainable Fishery in Hawai'i
Authors:Grigg, Richard W.
Date Issued:Jul 2001
Publisher:University of Hawai'i Press
Citation:Grigg RW. 2001. Black Coral: history of a sustainable fishery in Hawai'i. Pac Sci 55(3): 291-299.
Abstract:The black coral fishery in Hawai'i has been sustainable for the past
40 yr. The fishery began in 1958, shortly after its discovery off Lahaina, Maui,
by Jack Ackerman and Larry Windley, who later formed the company Maui
Divers of Hawaii. Since that time, the black coral jewelry industry has gradually
expanded and is valued in Hawai'i today at about $15 million at the retail level.
In the 1970s, studies of the population dynamics of the major species established
growth, recruitment, and mortality rates and led to the development of management
guidelines including recommendations for a minimum size and maximum
sustained yield. Results of a recent survey in 1998, reported in this paper,
show that rates of recruitment and growth are near steady state and appear to
account for the long-term stability of the fishery. However, recent technological
advances and potential increases in demand could lead to increased rates of
harvest. Should this happen, more stringent regulations may be required to
avoid overexploitation of the resource.
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 55, Number 3, 2001

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