(Honolulu) – When Silene perlmanii, an extremely rare small shrub with delicate white flowers, was discovered on O‘ahu by botanist Steve Perlman in 1987, just 20 individuals remained in the wild. Within three years, only 6 plants remained, dwindling to a single individual by 1994. The decline of this species at the last known wild site has been attributed to aggressive weeds and introduced ungulates damaging the habitat.
(Honolulu) – Maintaining and caring for (to malama) a remote wilderness park is a daunting, expensive, and labor-intensive task. When the leadership of the Hawai’i Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) elected this year to put renewed emphasis on the spectacular Napali Coast State Wilderness Park on Kaua’i, they knew that many years of unpermitted activity, an often-times unforgiving environment and unprepared or unwary visitors would continue to create a special set of challenges and opportunities.
(Lihue, Kauai) Hawaii’s forest birds are one of the best examples anywhere in the world, of what’s known as adaptive radiation. This means a few founding individual species evolved into a multitude of species. They’re also a key reason Hawaii holds the unenviable nickname of “extinction capitol of the world”, as many species have disappeared since the arrival of people to the islands. Most of the remaining are highly endangered and the subject of intense conservation efforts. Habitat loss and degradation, non-native predators, landscape-altering invasive weeds, and avian disease spread by mosquitoes have all contributed to the current predicament faced by these species.
(Kahului, Maui) – The three DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources (DOCARE) officers, assigned to the North Maui Community Fisheries Enforcement Unit (CFEU) are all Maui natives. They have a real and special connection to the 17-miles of state-controlled ocean water on Maui’s north shore. The CFEU, a partnership between the state with initial funding from Conservation International and the Harold C.K. Castle Foundation, was established to put sharp focus on a heavily used area; both by people recreating and by fishers. It’s those who fish that Officers Jeffrey Kinores, Nathan Hillen, and Joshua Rezentes focus their efforts on. In the three years since the establishment of this special unit, they’ve been able to shift their attention from enforcement to outreach and education. Also, while the first two years efforts were focused on illegal netting, the favorable weather conditions this past year saw officers shift to monitoring diving activity. In CFEU’s first year of operations (2013-2014), officers issued 41 total citations; 22 were for net violations. For the period beginning in 2015 and continuing until today, they issued 31 citations, including seven for netting violations and 14 for diving violations. That includes illegal take of lobster and undersized fish or exceeding bag limits.
KAHULUI – Visitors to the ‘Ahihi-Kina‘u Natural Area Reserve and Keone‘oi‘o (La Perouse Bay) area are advised that renovation of the Kanahena parking area is expected to create limited parking and traffic delays from August 29 through September 30.
HONOLULU -- As global climate change progresses, what will happen to Hawai‘i’s aquifers and the ecosystem services which healthy forest watersheds provide? Will we be able to meet our future fresh water needs for drinking and agriculture?
(Molokai) – Scattered across an expansive coastline of valleys, sea cliffs, boulders, and beaches, is a problem that affects everyone. “It doesn’t matter the name you give it, marine debris, ocean litter, coastal trash, or where it came from,” says James Espaniola of the Department of Land and Natural Resources. “The best thing to do is to get busy and do something about it.” That is exactly what The Nature Conservancy Molokai (TNC-Molokai), Kalaupapa National Historical Park (KNHP) and the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife’s (DOFAW) Natural Area Reserves System decided to do.
(Honolulu) – The deep, beautiful orange and black hue of Hawai’i’s official state insect is well known by visitors to native forests, and cultural practitioners. It is considered a critical pollinator for numerous native plants. The Kamehameha butterfly, like so many insects, plants, and animals in Hawai’i, is being crowded out of its traditional habitat by ever-encroaching human presence, the introduction of invasive predator species, and global climate change. Although the butterfly is historically known from all the main Hawaiian Islands (Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Lanaʻi, Maui, and Hawai’i), it is no longer found in some areas where it used to be common and it appears to be declining. The Pulelehua Project includes an effort to map current populations of the Kamehameha butterfly using observations submitted by the public, combined with surveys of remote areas by scientists. Pulelehua is the Hawaiian word for butterfly.
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(Honolulu) - The Hawaii Dept. of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) has established a special website for information on the upcoming International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress Hawaii 2016, being held in Honolulu, Sept. 1-10, 2016.