School of Yellowfin Goatfish in Maui, Hawaii

Snorkeling in Maui – Reef Care – Fish

Maui is home to many beautiful coral reefs.  If you love snorkeling and visiting this intriguing underwater world, you'll soon realize it's up to each of us to do our part to be good stewards to the reef and the creatures who make their home there. Part three of our reef care tips looks at avoiding careless human interactions that can negatively effect fish populations.

Skip the Fish Food:  Feeding Fish was at one time a pretty popular practice while snorkeling and diving; fortunately it's a tradition that's going by the wayside. It may sound like a fun idea at first—toss out some food and watch the fish swarm around you. But this short-term thrill can have long lasting impact. It can dramatically change reef dynamics and the variety of fish that inhabit an area. Feeding fish encourages  aggressive fish and aggressive feeding behaviors that often result in pushing out other fish species.

If you find yourself approached by a horde of "Sergeants" all looking for a hand-out, it's quite possible you've snorkeled into an area that's seen heavy fish feeding. What may initially seem “cute” is quickly lost when you notice a quantifiable lack of any other kinds of fish. If you want to be a good steward while you snorkel in Maui, don't feed the fish. Remember you're the guest. If you're interested in seeing a realistic picture of "life under the surface," you'll want to avoid doing things (like fish feeding) that interfere with the natural day-to-day activities of the creatures who live there.

For more ways you can help protect Maui's beautiful reefs, check back frequently or pick up a copy of Mask Fins & Snorkel: The Adventure Guide to Maui's Best Snorkeling!

Maui's Premier Snorkeling Guidebook

Snorkeling Guide Book for Maui - Front Cover of Mask, Fins & Snorkel: The Adventure Guide to Maui's Best Snorkeling

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Where to Buy on Maui:

Maui Dive Shop - 7 Locations

Makena Beach & Golf Resort


Maui Map

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