DLNR Warns Dumping Dead Fish in Ocean is Illegal

Alton Miyasaki
Alton Miyasaki

HAWAII KAI (KHNL) -- There are koi in the wild.

But they are small and drab colored -- the opposite of the bright, colorful fish that everyone knows.

And they definitely should not be thrown away in the stream or ocean. The State Department of Land and Natural Resources is looking into who caused this -- about 50 dead koi, washed up along the shoreline of Kuliouou Beach Park.

Biologists suspect the worst.

"Somebody dumped it in the ocean, because this normally doesn't occur," said Alton Miyasaki, a state aquatic biologist. "So it would've have to have been some kind of episode that brought all the fish together at the same time."

The fish started floating downstream on Sunday.

A concerned family pulls out about 25 of them.

"Just to get them out of the water because this is a community park," said Hawaii Kai resident Alika Malabey.  "A lot of the people come in, swim, and use this as a recreational purposes. It could create a health problem, if you have rotting fish on the shoreline.  Kids could come by and mess with it and put it in their mouths or something like that."

Fortunately, officials say there should be no diseases, because koi are fresh water fish, and any germs wouldn't survive in salt water.

But still, that doesn't mean these fish should've gotten a watery burial.

"I think they should dispose of these things properly, and not do it with no regards, thinking that it's not gonna effect anyone," said Miyasaki.  "Because it effects the public, effects the environment as well."

Officials want to remind everyone that any unwanted fish or aquatic plants should be disposed of properly.

If you're caught dumping dead fish, it's considered polluting the water.

The fine for that -- up to $25,000 dollars a day.

For drop-off locations, click on the Drop Off Locations link.