Today, Hawai'i is ground zero in the worldwide struggle to save reef wildlife. Reefs produce 50% of Earth's oxygen. Without reef wildlife, reefs die of algae overload, killing the reef. Reefs are essential to healthy oceans.
The ground-breaking documentary The Dark Hobby is an expose of the death of exotic fish, the reef and the ocean at the hands of the aquarium trade. It follows Native Hawaiians, conservationists and scientists who stop at nothing to ensure the survival of these creatures that are targets of a global trade worth billions. These heroes fight reef degradation, exploitation, and ensure the survival of marine habitat and species.
Exotic fish are a key part of the marine wildlife hierarchy on the reef. These herbivores live by eating the algae growing on the coral and maintain balance in the ocean's ecosystem. They live for decades in the wild. Scientific research shows that fish have feelings, experience pain, recognize human faces, communicate, make plans to hunt and sing.
Some species have been driven to extinction, while others are severely diminished by collectors for the aquarium industry. In some countries they use cyanide to stun the fish and dynamite to blow up the coral. They cut their fins, pierce their swim bladders with needles, starve them and seal them in plastic bags to ship with a minimum of water to survive. 90% of these creatures die within a year of capture, creating a demand for replacement, as seen in the documentary, The Dark Hobby https://thedarkhobby.com/
Healthy reefs are essential to our oceans, climate and health. Pledge to protect reef wildlife!