Catfish season delayed two weeks

Eric Osada
Eric Osada
Brian Kimata
Brian Kimata

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

NUUANU (KHNL) - Hold on to your poles! The start of catfish season has been delayed. That, along with the state's plans to end fish hatcheries here, has some fishermen reeling.

On a beautiful day along the ocean, Eric Osada is teaching his son Kaui not only how to fish but other important lessons that go along with this popular island hobby.

"It teaches them patience out there. It teaches them things about the environment to respect the land and the environment they are growing up in," said Osada, of Mililani.

The Osadas not only fish along the ocean, they signed up to cast for catfish at the Nuuanu reservoir this weekend. But their plans were sunk, because the fishing there is on hold for two more weeks.

The gates are locked on Saturday, July 18th, which was supposed to be the start of the catfish season. Now, the state says the gates will be open August 1st. The delay will give them more time to set dates and times for the thousands of island fishermen.

But some those island fishermen are upset they didn't find out about the delay until one day before the start of the fishing season.

"Up until Friday, we thought we were going fishing this weekend," said Brian Kimata, with Brian's Fishing Supply.

With the recent closure of island fisheries and uncertainty over catfish season, some worry the recent budget cuts will cut out this popular past time.

"I understand the money is tight but programs like this are very important," added Kimata.

To get an idea of how important it can be, just take a look at seven year old Kaui, as he catches his very first fish. And gets hooked himself on a healthy sport.

"Its something for him to do. Good for him to do and keep him occupied outdoors instead of indoors, playing video games," said his dad Eric.

But even as this young man has his first tale to tell about just how big that fish really was, other island fishermen worry their recreational sport may be the one that gets away.

The state says it will soon mail out fishing entry cards to over 7,000 fishermen for the weekend catfish sessions which begins on August 1st.