23 Mar '12, 3pm

Ancient Hawaiians Caught More By Fishing Less

Getty Images A school of manini fish pass over a coral reef in Hanauma Bay in Honolulu. Centuries ago, Hawaiians caught three times more fish annually than scientists generally consider to be sustainable in modern times — and maintained this level of harvest for more than 400 years, researchers report in a new study in the journal Fish and Fisheries. The findings could be instructive for agencies that enforce fishing limits in overfished waters around the globe. Native Hawaiians caught about 50 percent more fish than modern fleets catch today in both Hawaii and the Florida Keys, the two largest reef ecosystems in the United States, said a co-author of the study, Loren McClenachan , a fisheries researcher at Colby College in Waterville, Me. Hawaiians harvested about 15 metric tons of fish per square kilometer of reef annually from the years 1400 to 1800, the study found. Th...

Full article: http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/23/ancient-hawaiia...

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