Researchers fish for answers at Kaimana Beach

Beach goers surveyed about fishing at the popular spot

 UPDATED 6:22 AM HST Apr 15, 2013
HONOLULU -

Relaxing, snoozing, swimming, paddle boarding, are just some of the ways to have fun in the sun at Kaimana Beach. But is there room for fishing?

Students and researchers at Chaminade University are surveying beach goers to see if fishing should be regulated or stopped altogether at the beach.

Some say the ocean front at Kaimana becomes a dangerous traffic jam during the open fishing season with fishermen and swimmers navigating around each other.

"I actually had a rope go across my neck just from a floating buoy, and it was just that we couldn't see each other," said Gail Grabowsky, professor of the class spear heading the survey.

Researchers said fishing is ruining the diversity of the fish at Kaimana.

"In the open years, the fish drop -- but in the closed fishing years the fish come back, but then in the next open year they drop more, so they call is a sawtooth pattern down," said Grabowsky.

And some jumped to do the survey because having spears and fishing wire in the water with them was not something they want.

"Having spear guns in an area with tons of children and people trying to enjoy their day and vacation, I'm sure there are tons of other places to do it," said Stephen Bunkiewicz

Right now, fishing is restricted to even numbered years. Fishermen like Cory Nakamura said he's been fishing in the blue water at the beach since childhood, and he's not ready to let that end.

"As long as they do it responsibly and take care of everyone else in the water everyone can coexist and have fun," said Nakamura.

Researchers plan to survey at least 500 people and will bring their findings to the Department of Land and Natural Resources. The Waikiki Swim Club is also helping with the survey. People can take an online version of the questionnaire on its website.

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