mama’s fish house & maui’s fishermen working together

MamasFishHouseMama’s Fish House Executive Chef Perry Bateman and Chef de Poisson Mike Pascher are proud to announce that Mama’s Fish House, in cooperation with Maui fishermen and the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, deployed a new fishing buoy approximately 30 miles off the northeast shore of Maui. The buoy is called a Fish Aggregation Device (FAD) that is anchored to the seafloor at a depth of 15,000 ft.

It will be located in deep, offshore waters that are habitat for pelagic fish species such as tuna, mahi mahi, ono, and billfish. Fishermen in Hawai‘i have long known that pelagic fish are attracted to floating objects and have benefited from this by fishing around floating logs, nets and debris. Thus, FADs are used to temporarily “attract” fish to enhance fishing.

The State of Hawai‘i maintains a network of 55 FADs across the state, with the objective of providing fishing opportunities for Hawai‘i anglers. What makes this new FAD different from State-funded buoys is that it is the first partnership between private business, fishermen, and the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council.

All of the FADs require maintenance and Mama’s Fish House is providing funding for the assembly, deployment and maintenance of the buoy in a permitted location.

Mama’s Fish House knows that data collection is critical to ensuring sustainability for local Hawai‘i fish stocks and will be encouraging fishermen to submit their catch reports to the State and the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council. Locally harvested, sustainable fisheries are critical to sustaining Maui’s community. FADs are in a sense, another form of aquaculture in the spirit of ancient Hawaiian practices and methods.

Mama’s Fish House has been buying fish directly from Maui fishermen for over 40 years. These local fishermen are the first step in fulfilling Mama’s mission of providing customers a truly Hawaiian Hospitality experience. Mama’s is family owned by Floyd and “Mama” Doris Christenson, and employs over 300 Maui residents. Long before ‘farm to table’ became a buzz word, Mama’s was printing menus twice daily so that the fishermen, name of boat, and location of catch could be listed alongside the menu preparation.

Mama’s is proud to support this research and is also hoping that the MFH1 buoy is the start of bringing the fishing community together to cooperatively support additional FADs and to ensure that this unique Hawaiian way of life can continue for generations to come.

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