Nearly all fish living in saltwater aquarium tanks began their lives thousands of miles away on warm tropical reefs. Many of these fragile fish and other wildlife taken from the reef die before reaching personal aquariums from poisoning, the stress of captivity or the inhumane practices used in handling and transport to the pet store.
Nearly 60 percent of coral reefs on Earth are threatened from human activity. In areas where fish are captured for personal and public aquariums, that jumps to over 90 percent due to unsustainable and destructive fishing practices.
On June 8, 2021, World Oceans Day, Hawaiʻi’s Shark Protection Act was signed into law. Effective January 1, 2022, no person shall intentionally or knowingly capture or entangle any shark, whether alive or dead, or kill any shark, within state marine waters. Hawaiʻi is the first state in the nation to provide sharks with these essential protections.
Consumer demand is a leading driver in the capture of tens of millions of reef fishes and other tropical wildlife from coral reefs.
The vibrant beauty of coral reef fish is one of the main reasons people invest their time and money to set up a saltwater aquarium in their home or business. However, many animal-loving consumers are unknowingly contributing to the harm and destruction of the very animals and places they cherish.