The federal and state regulations for Papahānaumokuākea National Marine Monument prohibit anyone from removing, moving, taking, harvesting, possessing, injuring, disturbing or damaging any of its living or nonliving resources, or attempting any of these actions unless authorized by a Monument permit. While fishing is prohibited within the Monument, understanding ecological effects from historical fishing is of interest since there may be residual fishing impacts stemming from removal of targeted species, by-catch and habitat damage from use or loss of fishing gear.
Currently scientists are conducting a genetic survey of numerous reef fish and invertebrate species, designed to assess the level of connectivity between the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument and the Main Hawaiian Islands. Scientists have long debated whether the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands serves as a source of larvae that produce the next generation of fish and invertebrates for the Main Hawaiian Islands. To understand the behavior and movement of top predators in the Monument, acoustic and satellite telemetry is being employed. This type of research can offer insight and new understanding of movements between the open-ocean and atolls, and may also show habitat use. Additionally, residual fishing impacts and illegal fishing have both been highlighted as issues and human impact metrics and monitoring protocols are being developed through the implementation of the Natural Resources Science Plan.
|Project Name||PI and contacts||Links|
Connectivity Studies Genetics
Dr. Robert Toonen and Dr. Brian Bowen.
|Top Predator Movements||Dr. Kim Holland and Dr. Carl Meyer||http://www.papahanaumokuakea.gov/research/studies.html|
|Contrast in density, size, and biomass of reef fishes between the Northwest and Main Hawaiian Islands||Dr. Alan Friedlander||http://www.papahanaumokuakea.gov/wheritage/predator.html|
- How much has historical fishing affected current trophic structure?
- Do spawning aggregations occur and, if so, where?
- How much marine debris is generated by fishing activities and at what rate is it generated?
- Is there illegal fishing that occurs with the Monument and what is the best way to detect this kind of activity?
Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. 2008. Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument Condition Report 2008. U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, Silver Spring, MD. 54 pp.
Office of National Marine Sanctuaries. 2010. Papahānaumokuākea Science Fishing Impacts to Maritime Heritage Resources U.S. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, Silver Spring, MD, Accessed: 7/22/2014
Friedlander, A.M. and E.E. DeMartini. 2002. Contrast in density, size, and biomass of reef fishes between the Northwest and main Hawaiian islands: The effects of fishing down apex predators. Marine Ecology Progress Series 230:253-264