Hawai'i Coral Reef Network

Marine Protected Areas in Hawai'i

Hilo Harbor, Wailoa River, and Wailuku River FMA

Established 1981


Location: Hilo Harbor refers to that portion of the bay in Hilo bounded seaward by the breakwater, and a line from the tip of the breakwater southwestward to Alealea Point. "Wailoa River" is that part of Wailoa River bounded by a line drawn across the mouth of the river and the footbridge at the mouth of Waiakea Pond, and includes Waiolama Canal upstream of Pauahi Street. "Wailuku River" is that part of Wailuku River between the Mamalahoa Highway bridge and Wainaku Avenue bridge.


  • Use of thrownets, opae nets not exceeding three feet in any dimension, and nehu nets not longer than fifty feet to take nehu for family consumption or bait purposes.
  • Taking of crabs with baited lines, provided that a dip net may be used to land crabs lured to the bait, or with not more than five crab nets not exceeding two feet in longest straight line dimension and stretched mesh of not less than two inches, provided such nets are attended to at all times.
  • Commercial Marine licensees with a bait license may take bait-fishes.
  • Licensed pond owners or operators may take young mullet (pua) or other small fish for stocking their fishpond.


  • Use of nets, except as indicated in permitted activities above.
  • To catch or possess more than 20 fish of all species of mullet, moi and ulua (including papio and omilu), provided such bag limit shall not include more than 15 moi. Mullet and moi may not be taken during their closed seasons.
  • To fish with more than two poles with one line each, or two hand-lines, or with more than two hooks or lures per line.
  • To use traps.
  • To take or possess more than three Samoan crabs per day, or any Samoan crab less than six inches in width, and kuahonu (white) crabs measuring less than four inches in width across the back, or any crab with external eggs or with missing or mutilated abdomen or tail, or with a puncture wound.
See also: Administrative Rules


Last update: 6/12/2002