HONOLULU — In response to the unprecedented large-scale commercial harvest of sea cucumbers earlier this year, the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) has scheduled public hearings in November on a new rule to permanently regulate sea cumber harvesting in state water. Currently all sea cumber harvest is prohibited by a 120 day emergency rule adopted by the Board of Land and Natural Resources in June.
The proposed new rule will provide more long-term protection of sea cucumbers. It prohibits the harvest of sea cucumbers for commercial consumption purposes, but allows limited take for personal non-commercial use. The rule would also establish an annual season for commercial aquarium harvest of two species of sea cucumbers on Oahu only. While the season is open, licensed aquarium collectors may harvest up to 20 sea cucumbers a person each day. The aquarium season will close when the total annual aquarium catch limit of 3,600 sea cucumbers is reached.
Public Hearing Schedule
Monday, November 9:
MAUI – Lihikai School, Kahului, 5:30-8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, November 10:
MOLOKAI – Mitchel Pauole Center Conference Room, Kaunakakai, 1:00-3:00 p.m.
OAHU – Stevenson Middle School Cafeteria, Honolulu, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
HILO – Hawaii County Aupuni Center Conference Room, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
KONA – Kealakehe High School Cafeteria, 6:00-9:00 p.m.
Thursday, November 12:
LANAI – Lanai Public Library, 1:00-3:00 p.m.
KAUAI – Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School Cafeteria, Lihue, 5:30-8:30 p.m.
People are encouraged to attend a public hearing to provide information and comment for the DLNR to consider. Those unable to attend or who wish to provide additional comments, can submit written testimony via mail or e-mail by Friday, November 20, 2015.
Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR), 1151 Punchbowl Street, Room 330, Honolulu, HI 96813. DLNR.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anyone with a hearing impairment who would like to attend a public hearing may request the assistance of a sign language interpreter. Send requests to the DAR address above or call 587-0100 (voice or TDD) in Honolulu. Requests must be received at least seven days in advance.
Additional information or a copy of the proposed rules will be mailed at no charge upon receipt of verbal or written request to the DAR address or may be obtained from the DAR website at http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/DAR under the “Announcements” section.