Mākāhā Dipytch, giclee print by Carol Araki Wyban.
Top: The Ancient Mākāhā:
The leap from trapping fish to growing fish was made centuries ago. Aquaculture came through innovation. The Mākāhā is the technological innovation of the fishpond. It consists of lashed poles on a stationary gate and a channel connecting the pond to the sea. This channel is called the auwai kai. The Mākāhā serves three purposes: water circulation and aeration of the fishpond, natural stocking of fingerling fish attracted to the diatom enriched pond water enter the spaces between the lash poles and harvest of fish attracted to the flow of water. Mature fish must go to the open sea to reproduce. During spawning season the auwai is filled with fish and they can be caught by hand or net.
Bottom: The Post-European Contact Mākāhā:
The availability of new materials such as screen and metal fixtures resulted in more innovation. Fishponds became more manageable and efficient. Circulation and pond inflow and outflow can be controlled. Stocking could be selective and quantities of unwanted predators could be eliminated. Harvest is efficient. During spawning season, the inner gate is raised at high tide. The fish rush into the channel in a matter of minutes, the auwai is full of fish. When the gate is slammed, large quantities of fish are easily trapped. Continuous harvesting and stocking renews the life of the fishpond. This design is based on Lokoea fishpond’s main Mākāhā, where the artist, Carol Araki Wyban and husband Jim spent many early mornings catching fish.
Dimensions: 14″ x 18″ Double Mat; two images in one mat; Framed 14.5″ x 18.5″
This giclee print is part of the Fishpond Technology: From Fishing to Fishponds.
Hawaiians observed nature. They conceived of, built and operated aquaculture systems. Ancient fishponds were in operation for centuries before Europeans came to Hawaiʻi. Their tools were their intellect, their hands, rocks and trees. The following figures describe the basic technology of fishponds and how they took the leap from fishing to aquaculture.
To learn more about Carol and her artistic process visit her bio page here.