I am a scuba diver in a very small field that catches fish for home aquariums, the actual big aquarium, and universities.

Ask me anything

Comments: 148 • Responses: 56  • Date: 

KeepItAnon64112 karma

HAVE YOU SEEN MY SON?!

Reefcatcheraq33 karma

Haha I don't know! Who is your son and what does he do??

KeepItAnon6480 karma

HIS NAME IS NEMO HES JUST A BOY

Reefcatcheraq35 karma

LOL... no I haven't seen Nemo. We don't have clown fish here in Hawaii, nor do we have blue tangs like Dori. We do have their close relatives though! Nemo and Dori are in Australia!

Fr3nchman17 karma

1) Where does most of your scuba diving take place? 2) Scariest encounter in the depths below. 3) What is your personal aquarium looking like? 4) How in the hell did you get this job?

Cheers and safe diving!

Reefcatcheraq41 karma

I catch fish out here in Hawaii. I catch fish at random reefs, and we don't go to the same reef for 3-6 months. Kind of like farming, you can't over harvest and have to let things regrow! We don't go to any tourist attractions either, kind of go off the grid.

Scariest encounter was probably my first time catching reef fish. I've got 3000-5000 dives over the past 15 years of diving, so I'm not new to diving. Never ran out of air ever, but my first time catching fish I didn't realize all the stuff I had to carry caused so much drag that I got back up to the boat with probably less than 10 breaths of air left in my tank. Other than that, probably being circled by 6 bull sharks while I was spearfishing for food, and having to poke them with my spear gun because they where coming after my fish on my hip... that's probably the scariest since I had to continually fend off sharks from all angles and try to make it to the surface in one piece!!

I don't have a personal aquarium because it's too much work, time, and money. My personal aquarium is the ocean!

There are only about 20-25 people that collect fish across all the islands in Hawaii, which has just shy of 1.5 million in population.

I randomly got the job by looking on Craigslist. It wasn't advertised as a reef fish catching job, some guy just wanted a dive buddy. After he came to find out that I have a Marine Biology degree, experience spearfishing, boat captains license, and so many dives and could identify tons of fish he offered me the job. There are only 3 of us, and we make up 3 of 10 people doing it on my island. It's a very specialized job, and take a lot of skill and practice to get good at it.

People don't realize fish are FAST! Underwater, we're very slow. You can't chase down or out swim a fish, so it takes trickery and patience!

smashells3217 karma

Why isn't raising fish in an aquarium setting done over catching wild fish? It's akin to grabbing wild animals out of their habitat to put in zoos.

Reefcatcheraq29 karma

They are trying to raise fish in aquariums, but it is very difficult and expensive. I would say about 90% of fish in aquariums are taken from the wild.

The thing is, fish breed like wildfire kinda similar to insects. One fish can have tons and tons of babies. That doesnt hold true for mammals or larger wildlife which only have a few offspring.

The fish don't know they are in a tank, and honestly have a more stress free life since there are no predators chasing them daily!

We catch wild fish sustainably, and never over harvest one area. People always think we are rapeing the ocean, however that's not the case at all!

CaptainAutistic10 karma

If fish breed like wildfire and are less stressed in a tank, why don't they breed like wildfire in a tank?

Am not taking the piss. It's a serious question

breshecl5 karma

I only keep freshwater fish, but it can be very difficult to figure out what makes certain species spawn (sometimes it's not well known even for more common aquarium fish) and it can be very difficult to recreate those conditions in a tank, even once you know exactly what it takes. Some fish are also picky bastards and won't like the other fish of the same species that you've collected. In addition, baby fish (aka fry) are also very sensitive to water chemistry changes - easy to manage in giant pools of water like lakes or oceans, much harder to do in small tanks.

Edit: I keep a species from Venezuela called Endler's Livebearers in my tanks and they are a wildfire fish. As such, they're common in the hobby. Anymore, most of the common/affordable fish are the "wildfire" style ones, where we know how to breed them. But some fish we're still figuring out, so they have to be caught from the wild, and more and more effort is going into captive-bred programs.

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Thank you for this comment. Most people just don't understand!

writerofenglish2 karma

The thing is, fish breed like wildfire kinda similar to insects. One fish can have tons and tons of babies. That doesnt hold true for mammals or larger wildlife which only have a few offspring.

And yet very few survive to adulthood. If you are taking these fish while they are still young, they will never breed in the wild and that's a loss of thousands of young.

The fish don't know they are in a tank, and honestly have a more stress free life since there are no predators chasing them daily!

How do you know what fish know? What about all the other aspects of a natural life? What proportion of fish die between your net and hobbyists' tanks? In the Philippines, that figure is 80%, with another 18% dying within the first year. That's right: 98% of wild-caught fish don't survive the first year.

We catch wild fish sustainably, and never over harvest one area. People always think we are rapeing the ocean, however that's not the case at all!

Perhaps you do, but perhaps you don't. What scientific input has there been to validate this claim? The effects of the aquarium trade are largely unknown, but studies on single populations always have a negative conclusion. This is from National Geographic:

Concerns about the overcollection of many fish species arise from the fact that the aquarium trade is largely untraceable. No centralized global database exists for tracking how many fish are scooped from reefs—or even how they’re captured. In places where cyanide is used, the toxin not only damages fragile coral reef ecosystems but also propels the demand for fish because poisoned animals are prone to go belly up sooner

Finally, some of the methods used to catch and transport the fish are barbaric.

Where do you collect fish and what methods do you use?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

Thank you for your comments/debate. I only use hand nets (like butterfly nets) and a single fence net (a small net that forms a barrier/fence)

I'm completely against cyanide and dynamite fishing.

I've never had one fish die on me ever. (Not going to ignore the fact that they may have died in someone's aquarium) Maybe other countries suck at keeping fish alive?? Tip me, sounds like it! I'm not about killing fish unless I'm spearfishing for food. Spearfishing it's also the most ethical and sustainable way to fish. You see the fish you want, shoot it, and eat it. No bycatch at all! Not trying to rude, but look it if you don't know what bycatch is.

I'm an ocean advocate, and a Marine Biologist major. That doesn't make a know it all... but I'm not trying to F'up the oceans.

I do know that I'm doing things right and respecting the ocean. Sorry if you don't agree, but I understand your concern.

iRepliToU17 karma

What is the capital of Kazakhstan?

Reefcatcheraq15 karma

Nur-Sultan -- yes I have Google university on my side. That's a super random question to ask... why??

tjulr11 karma

How is Climate Change impacting the reefs in Hawaii? I went for a sub dive a few years back and the coral was mostly white and dead. A few diving spots looked okay minus the people impact.

Reefcatcheraq28 karma

I've seen reefs that are just dead. I've been diving for 15 years, most if which have been lately... but I've seen the damage and seen the destruction! Many reefs here are bleached (coral bleaching) and dead... to be honest, the earth and oceans are dying!!

an_anphibian6 karma

Pay grade?

Reefcatcheraq9 karma

Depends how good you are and how lucky you are finding certain fish. Pay is as little as $1-$2 per fish, but certain fish go for $100-$200. Depending on the day and number of dives I do, I can make $50-$300+ per day.

Kelderm25 karma

In diving classes, they teach us to respect and let the environment be. Do you find that you are using your powers for the wrong side?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

No I don't... I'm an environmentalist by heart and I don't feel like I'm messing up the environment. Picture it like I'm taking pidgeons from New York... there are more than enough to go around.

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

Never killed a fish! We let them decompress before taking them up. We keep them in fresh saltwater/sea water in tubs until they make it to the aquarium. Reef fish can easily live in a tub for 3+ hours!

Nalopean_Bonatarpe4 karma

What is the biggest animal you've ever caught, and was it hard to do?

Reefcatcheraq12 karma

Hmmm I'd probably say a big southern brown stingray! I don't catch sharks, those are caught for aquariums by hook and line.

And yes, catching a big stingray (I'm talking like much bigger than a car tire) is very difficult. Mainly it's difficult because they are pretty much solid muscle, and go crazy with their tail/barb when trapped.

Other than that, catching stonefish and lionfish are not the biggest catches, but by far more dangerous due to their venom in my opinion. Yes I have been hit by both, and I wouldn't wish that upon my worst enemy!! I cringe reliving those events in my mind!

Phil_Latcio3 karma

Could you elaborate what you experienced when and after you were hit (I completely understand if you dont want to relive it too)

Reefcatcheraq4 karma

Well, pretty much I was leading a dive on both times accidentally stuck myself and pretty much ended the dives early. Pain was unreal/unimaginable... my boat captain had me wrap my hand in a wet rag and had me put it on the engine (heat is the best and recommend way to deal with the toxin). My hand swelled and I basically felt pain for 2 weeks in my hand... 100% would not do again!!!

hahasadface1 karma

Where did the stingray end up?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

At an aquarium in Florida. Touch tank after the barb was clipped!

SummerAndTinklesBFF4 karma

Do you ever feel guilt for removing a fish from it’s natural habitat where it may swim for hundreds of miles to a small aquarium where it will die before it’s natural life expectancy when there are countless captive bred fish which are hardier and have never experienced the open waters? Even in zoos and corporate aquaria there is fish loss. Why not focus on captive bred programs?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

No, I don't feel bad about it. I've never killed or lost a fish (unless spearfishing for food)!! Honestly, as sad as it is to say... the fish don't know any better. Honestly, they may live better lives, since they're not swimming from predators daily!! I used to be a dolphin and sea lion trainer... that is sad and I'd never do it again!! Fish on the other hand, well they don't know and may live happier and stress free lives!

Alieneater4 karma

Are you collecting corals as well?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

No, not currently because that WILL f'up the reef! I would like to break off fragments and grow it and replant it to better our reefs though!!

pokemonGOzoe4 karma

Do you get backlash when you tell people your profession due to Nemo's popularity?

Reefcatcheraq10 karma

Yep I certainly do!! However, I try to educate them and explain that what I do is environmentally conscious and we're not destroying the ocean. If you're looking for the imposters destroying the ocean, blame the commercial fishing industry and send their lack of regulation!!!

Dr_Faux6 karma

What are the legal limits of catching fish for aquariums?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

With the proper license... none! I think it should be more regulated, but at least "most" fish collectors are doing it ethically

TinKicker3 karma

(Avid Reef keeper and scuba diver here). Didn’t Hawaii recently ban the capture and export of ornamental fish? Do you need a license for your work? Also a side note: Anyone who has been keeping reef aquariums long enough knows that even several degrees fluctuation in water temperature is not critical for any of the major SPS or LPS corals. Studies of coral bleaching events are pointing towards water contaminants as the primary cause, with suntan lotions being the prime suspect in littoral waters.

The lion fish problem in the Caribbean was caused by aquarium hobbyists releasing their unwanted lion fish into the wild. Lion fish are native to the Pacific, not Atlantic waters.

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

You are correct! Suntan lotions are very bad for our oceans! While global warming is happening, contaminates in there water are also killing our reefs!

Honestly, no one know the true answer how the lionfish got into the gulf, east coast, and the Carribean. You're guess is probably right. Dumbasses dumped them in the water!!

ThrowAway_V10_3 karma

Are you writing this from a sharks stomach??

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Nope! I don't kill or catch sharks! I'm certainly around them, but don't mess with them unless they mess with me!!

azul_23333 karma

I'm a certified diver from the Caribbean, and some years ago, there was a hurricane or something up north by the United states that drove all of the lion fish into our waters. They're an invasive species with no local predators to keep their population in check, so they asked me and a couple of others to hunt down the fish so that they didn't completely obliterate our local fauna. My question is if something of the sort has ever happened to you?

Reefcatcheraq9 karma

Yes, I used to live in the Carribean... I shoot every single one I see if not collecting it, which is very rare and by request! I used to feed them to sharks and eels, trying to get them to hunt them!! Even had a snapper take one off my spear when I wasn't looking one time... that was funny/interesting!!

reverendbeast2 karma

A few years ago in Indonesia, I watched a gang of fish collectors systematically destroy a patch of coral reef using bars and hammers to frighten little fish from their hiding places. Do you use destructive techniques like what I observed, because the fuckers I watched certainly were “rapists of the sea”?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Absolutely not!! I use hand nets and a fence net to catch fish. I don't ever want to harm the reefs... that is f'ed up they did that!!

N4kiito2 karma

Does catching fish affect the environment (eg Fauna,...) ?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Maybe it does, I'm not 100% sure to be honesty with you. I would say NO that we're not damaging the reef ecosystem.

We only visit a single dive site every 3-6 months. It's like farming... harvest what you need and give it time to regrow!

Killing sharks and other big ocean game predators DOES screw with the ecosystem. We're only taking a small amount of fish.

The commercial fishing and shrimping boats are what are truly messing up the ocean!!

FluffyGhoster2 karma

What is the maximum depth you can operate at and what procedure do you follow to get there? Do you use Rebreather and/or Trimix? Do you use decompression tables?

Reefcatcheraq7 karma

We catch fish anywhere from 30ft to 100ft (max depth probably around +130ftish). We don't use rebreathers, but that's where the super rare fish are! I just don't have $20k laying around for the equipment, and most people don't want the super rare fish anyway to be honest!!

Of course we use decompression tables and dive computers! I don't follow the tables though, because my dive computer is much more accurate!

We don't dive Trimix either, no need for that with there depth we're at. We do dive high blend Nitrox exclusively though, which does just fine extending our bottom time and making things more safe!!

instaasspats2 karma

Why?

Reefcatcheraq-7 karma

Money and aquarium owners and a aquariums want to own fish??!! Also, have you never been to a zoo or aquarium as a kid? Do you think the fish just swam into the aquarium? LOL thanks for the major laugh!!

Don't want to call you dumbass, but seriously how do you think fish get into aquariums? How do you think animals get into zoos? Wow just wow!

I do things ethically and with respect for nature... and educate kids on proper ocean care. You made me laugh and thanks for that!! How can you educate people if you can't show them how??

instaasspats-8 karma

Yes I know how they get there and about zoos, aquariums, etc. And I'm serious. Why do you pluck those animals out of their homes who have done nothing to you? You're just fucking up the ecosystem even more, our oceans are already being fished out because of humanity's greed. So why? Is a little bit of money worth what you're doing in order to earn it?

eye_spi4 karma

Your sense of scale seems a little off.

instaasspats1 karma

What do you mean?

eye_spi-1 karma

The scale engaged for ethical harvesting, as OP has described, is a few fish (and only the ones he wants) in one spot--which is not nearly enough to "fuck up the environment." This is followed by a several month abstention during which the fish repopulate. It's a little like pruning a hedge: do it every day, and the hedge will die; do it every few months, and the hedge is fine.

For comparison of scale where "fucking up the environment" is concerned, commercial fishing takes in literal tons of fish and other marine life they don't want to get to the even greater quantities of fish they do. By comparison, OP makes zero difference in harming the environment, and the educational and research opportunities he supports actually help raise awareness and improve our understanding of marine life so we can be better stewards and not fuck it all up.

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Omfg you hit the nail on the head!! I'm glad you understand and can help confirm things!! People have no idea, but you do!! Thank you for backing me up. I/we do things very sustainably, commercial fishing not so much whatsoever! I'm not the one effing up the ocean, it's the commercial fish and shrimping boats totally destroying our oceans!!!

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

You know absolutely nothing!! Do you eat fish, shrimp or lobster? Well if so, you're fucking up the ocean 1000x more than me.

Is it worth it... if you didn't read my other posts apparently, why is it okay to kill deer, bears, quail, ducks, moose, and it goes on and on!! How many cubs does a bear have? Less than 3-6 (and that's a stretch) and that's just a guess. How many babies does a fish have? 100 to over 1000...I don't know if you understand logic and numbers, but maybe you should go back to school haaha you tell me how the numbers make sense. Sorry, but what I do is environmentally safe and sustainable. Come back at me something more ethical!! You are one of the delusion ones that think I'm killing the ocean.

Why don't you go after the commercial fishing industry that's killing thousands of sharks, turtles, and random fish that die in their nets and traps. Good job bro, you're a hero!!

writerofenglish1 karma

Sorry, but what I do is environmentally safe and sustainable.

Prove it. Let's see licences, scientific validation, actual data on how your industry's practices don't harm fish and coral populations. Do you have any?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Ummm we do have licenses, and just like farming we're don't over harvest a site. We don't go back to a single site for 3-6 months! Do you condone killing bears, deer, ducks, ect??? Because if so, you have lost your mind and can't understand numbers!!

say0chan2 karma

Are you based only to work on a specific island or are you able to work throughout the islands? If you work on all the islands, are you able to work internationally?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

I can work on any island, but the same fish are there on every island so it makes no sense to work on a different island!!

Neko_oof1 karma

How do you catch the fish? Specific tool?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

I carry two hand nets (like butterfly nets), a weighted and buoyed fence net, a tickler spear, and a bucket to keep the fish in. I carry 5 things and have to drop and move things one by one periodically. Drop and go and repeat!

I've got about 3000-5000 dives under my belt. This is no easy task... good luck on being able to catch even 1 fish and handle all the gear if you have less than 1000 dives!! This job is no easy task... one of the hardest underwater jobs I've had!!

Nopenotinfrance1 karma

Best experience fishing? Oh! What’s the rarest fish you have ever caught?

Reefcatcheraq3 karma

I don't fish from land. I spearfish for food (don't just go killing fish for fun) and catch fish for work.

Best fishing experience... probably lobstering for spiny or slipper lobsters (BTW slipper lobsters are the sweetest and best lobster ever).

I also enjoy hogfish, which can only be speared and won't bite a hook! They only eat crab and shrimp, maybe a baby lobster, so they are the sweetest fish you'll ever taste! Do try one ASAP!

I do also enjoy the hunt for grouper and snappers!

Rarest fish I caught... sorry but couldn't say! I've caught too many fish to count. Some being very rare, but nothing like a $10,000+ fish. Maybe a $100-$300 fish at best!

larryyys1 karma

Which is the most well known commercial aquarium that you’ve fished for? And how many years have you been in this job?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

I've helped catch fish for the aquarium in Hawaii and the universities... I've also caught fish in Florida for an aquarium, but that was just for fun!!

thrwawayevryday1 karma

What questions would you like to answer?

Reefcatcheraq7 karma

Anything really! Mainly though I would like to let people know we aren't destroying the ocean and taking every fish. Commercial fishing boats do far far more/greater damage to the ocean than anywhere near me catching a handful of fish. In all honesty, we barely even put a dent in the fish population. Catching fish is the hardest thing I've ever done underwater. Much much harder than sitting in a deer stand or duck blind and pulling a trigger. Why is no one crying about shooting deer, ducks, or quail? People even hunt bears and moose for goodness sakes!! But they're doing it sustainably, which is what we do too!! Plus, fish have more than one or two babies, try hundreds to thousands. I'm still confused on the hate this industry gets. Yes, we are not eating the fish, but that's a whole different discussion!

However, people sometimes think we are the bad guys. Think again! I don't kill sharks, turtles, or random fish. I specifically pick and choose which fish to catch, which is far more sustainable.

ibnik1 karma

Do you set traps? & I saw a post about this one guy who goes down for corals, brings them up to be fragmented, and then he reattaches the frags to secure places when he goes back down in the area. He's been doing it for years and it had a very positive impact on the habitats. Do you think taking time, like 20-30 mins, around each dive to do this would secure your variety of species?

Reefcatcheraq6 karma

Very cool! I have wanted to start growing coral fragments myself on a chain link fence to help regrow the reefs, because I can where I'm located. Sadly, I do not want to break any laws, and there is a big gray area on what I can do.

The reefs are dying due to global warming. I've seen it first hand and it's truly saddening.

Honestly, the reef fish population is, from what I've seen, very healthy here in Hawaii. No need to expand the reefs. The fish breed and come back, just like farming.

I also do NOT set traps, and catch fish using hand nets and fence nets. I specifically pick which fish I catch!!!

The ocean is like the forest... it grows and dies and moves throughout the ocean!

9yroldupvotegiver1 karma

Is there any specifc fish that is harder to catch than others due not to rarity, but to their speed or ability to hide?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

Yes very much so! Pufferfish swim so slowly it's a joke/easy to catch them. Tangs, butterfly fish, angel fish just to name a few are a completely different story! They are super fast you'll never catch one EVER with a hand net, a fence net is you're only hope!

9yroldupvotegiver1 karma

Hmm. Interesting. As a follow-up you mentioned pufferfish. Are they really sold? Or are they for eating? (fugu).

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

The pufferfish are sold. They are super small, like smaller than a golf ball! No one wants a softball sized puffer in their tank!!

mikusXanon1 karma

Are you aware of the fact that fish is able to feel i.e. lonely or afraif? If not, then educate yourself and change your job as its harmufl. If you are aware... Well, then what you're doing is disgusting as you are basically kidnapping living creatures for your own profit, in that case that would be disgusting.

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Yes I understand fish can be afraid. I've seen it hundreds of times when they are swimming for their lives! We definitely do things sustainably, so that's no issue. Think what you will, but you're wrong. Fish have 100's to 1000's of babies. If a baby fish is inside a tank, it doesn't have to worry about predators eating it every single minute. I understand intelligence, and a fish in an aquarium is none the wiser.

Nautilusa1 karma

What kind of fish are high in demand? I remember being amazed with the variety of fish when I was snorkeling there. Seeing new ones every time!

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Honestly no one in particular, every aqaurist wants something different! Just depends on the person!

twcochran1 karma

How ethical is this? Are there many regulations to protect endangered species, and how well are they enforced?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

We have our licenses. Most people think we are destroying the ocean when you say you're catching fish. We only go to a single site once every 3-6 months. It's like farming, we only harvest just enough and give it time to regrow!

Look into commerical fishing. They kill sharks, turtles, and random fish and are destroying our ocean.

We take a handful of fish that we pick and choose. We honestly aren't the bad guys!

mercsterreddit1 karma

What kind of fish? I've kept several aquariums in my day, but my favorite type of fish were African cichlids.

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

Everything you could imagine. Butterfly fish, angel fish, pufferfish, tangs, gobies, banded shrimp, eels and so much more!!

chrisbkreme1 karma

What's your favorite freshwater fish?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

I live in the ocean... don't collect freshwater fish or know anything about them!!

mikebellman1 karma

With their short lifespans and elusive character, have you collected many octopus (of any variety) and what can you say about them?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

Yes I've caught more than a few to eat, but I don't catch then anymore since there so smart and I feel bad. They are very smart, and super strong. I've put two feet on a rock just to try to pull once out. No joke, they're pure muscle and force!

Interesting fact, you can't keep or sell an octopus unless it's over 1lb... and that's a big octopus, so we don't collect them!!

Peevish_Palmer1 karma

Are the fish better off in the aquariums? Or would they be better off in their natural habitat?

(I know I come across as salty, bitter and vegan, but I am not vegan. The other two are debatable)

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

I honestly don't know. My best guess? Better off in aquariums since they aren't swimming for their lives from predators on the daily!! Seen it every day in the wild!! They swim, hide, and run from their from predators!! I honestly don't know though. Fish aren't very smart (just swim and escape) so I don't now they even understand if they're in a tank? I'm still not sure!!

Whitefire0051 karma

Have you ever been attacked by the fish when trying to catch a fish?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Well yes kind of. Not while catching fish, but I've been attacked by many stupid damsel fish (which thinks it's the biggest fish in the ocean) and there bite feels like a peck on the cheek, and the mean/territorial effect Humuhumu which their bite actually hurts!

BabyYoda42o1 karma

What kind of fresh water fish are in the island? Neat or otherwise. You have a freshwater eel I think?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

I don't catch freshwater fish ever. Not even sure what freshwater fish are even here in Hawaii. I've never thought about freshwater eels, other then an electric eel.

shawnwasim1 karma

Have you encountered any deep sea fish? I’m fascinated yet terrified of deep sea fish so do you have any recommendations on some weird deep sea creatures to research?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

No super deep fish... the pretty ones are swimming shallow (<100ft)! The deep fish are usually ugly, and no one wants ugly fish!!

LegendaryReader1 karma

What's the most exotic/rarest fish you caught?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Not sure... I couldn't say because I've caught tons of fish!

Solodeji1 karma

Where can I find you for personal interaction?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Under the water scuba diving!

nojikoji1 karma

how do i do this?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Be a scuba diver and know your fish! Then find a aquarium that needs fish! DM if you're really interested and want more info!!

xXharryeizardXx1 karma

How do you catch the fish and keep them alive?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

Never killed a fish! We let them decompress before taking them up. We keep them in fresh saltwater/sea water in tubs until they make it to the aquarium. Reef fish can easily live in a tub for 3+ hours!

DarkSkyForever1 karma

Do you collect any of the native species from the area, like flame wrasses or flame angels?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

I do catch only local fish/native species! I don't think I've ever seen either of those fish in my life! I dive all the time, and still don't think I've ever seen those fish!! That's a rare occurrence for me!! What depths are they common??

DarkSkyForever1 karma

The flame wrasses are found in 100ft of water or less on the reefs, same for the angel. I have a supermale flame wrasse in my 220g reef tank. Fun fish!

What do you commonly catch? I was under the assumption those flame wrasses were common out in the waters around Hawaii!

Do you collect for resellers? Or are you selling directly to private collectors and universities?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

I work for a guy selling fish direct to market. Honestly those are super pretty fish! Looking at the photos again, I've never seen one in my life... and I've got 3000-5000 dives in my life (most elsewhere, but still). I'm always excited to see something I've never seen before... and I've never seen either of those fish before! Must be very rare! They are not common by any means!!

FriendlyCraig1 karma

I totally thought that said you were a llama diver and got all excited.

So would you rather dive with a llama or an alpaca as your partner?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

I don't know... which is nice?

GreenLittleSnoop1 karma

What is the worst thing you have ever seen while scuba diving?

Reefcatcheraq2 karma

I saw a bull shark eat a fish right off my friends stinger while spearfishing. He looked down after it happened and only saw half a fish!! He is lucky the shark was precise and didn't accidentally take his leg!!

Other than that, I didn't see it directly happen, but my old boss had a heart attack and drowned while scuba diving!! So sad!! Diving is very safe... sad to see him go!!

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Probably a bull shark bite the fish off a buddys leg. He didn't even see it happen, just looked down to see half a fish on his stinger. My buddy is lucky he still has his leg and the shark was accurate with its attack!!

Other than that I didn't witness it happen

MisterMN-1 karma

You have the greatest job ever? What was your most and least favorite moment on the job?

Reefcatcheraq1 karma

Sharks bothering me?? Sharks are essential to the reef, but are annoying and a hassle to deal with!!