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HWF in the News

> July 17, 2014 - Fencing meant to protect dunes and turtles
> June 4, 2014 - Federal Court rules against Maui County
> May 30, 2014 - Dawn Patrol: Sea Turtle Nesting Season
> Jan 17, 2014 - Hawaii Wildlife Fund partners with Bluecology
> Nov 9, 2013 - Hawaii Wildlife Fund featured in Seattle Times
> Aug 23, 2013 - Hawaii Wildlife Fund team protects fragile pools
> July 25, 2013 - Study links injection wells, nearshore flows
> July 2013 - Marine debris connects filmmaker with HWF

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Fencing meant to protect dunes and turtles
HWF's Hawksbill Sea Turtle Recovery Project protects turtles
July 17, 2014 - MAUI, HI - July 17, 2014 - Maui News - Kealia Pond National Wildlife Area Park Ranger Courtney Brown (right) and Cheryl King, vice president and Maui research coordinator for Hawaii Wildlife Fund, bolt a section of fencing together along North Kihei Road on Tuesday morning. The Maui News / MATTHEW THAYER photoThe fence made from recycled plastic is designed to keep nesting sea turtles from cresting the dunes and stepping into traffic. In separate incidents in the 1990s, a pair of endangered hawksbill turtles were killed when struck by cars. It is estimated that there are fewer than 100 adult female hawksbills that nest in Hawaii. King said the fencing is also a way to protect the dunes, which see a lot of activity being so close to both the road and the beach. The project also involves removing the old wood and wire sand fencing that formerly protected the turtles and fragile dunes.
> Read article in the Maui News

Federal Court rules against Maui County
County subject to penalties for violation of Clean Water Act

June 2, 2014 - HONOLULU, HI - On Friday, May 30, the federal district court in Honolulu ruled that Maui County is violating the Clean Water Act by using injection wells to illegally discharge wastewater from a water treatment facility. The court concluded that most of the three to five million gallons of wastewater the Kahekili Beach on west Maui. Joe West - ShutterstockCounty’s Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility dumps into the wells each day flows through groundwater and emerges offshore of popular Kahekili Beach Park in West Maui, where the wastewater-laden groundwater "substantially affects the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of the ocean water." The court will impose civil penalties for the County’s violations following a hearing set for March 17, 2015.

In 2012, four Hawaii community groups - Hawaii Wildlife Fund, Surfrider Foundation, West Maui Preservation Association, and Sierra Club-Maui Group - filed suit under the federal Clean Water Act to stop Maui County from discharging wastewater into the ocean from its Lahaina treatment plant without a permit. Their lawsuit followed years of unsuccessful efforts to resolve the issue out of court.
> Read Press Release

Dawn Patrol: Sea Turtle Nesting Season
County subject to penalties for violation of Clean Water Act

May 30, 2014 - MAUI, HI - Wildlife officials are asking the public to be mindful of Hawksbill and green sea turtles as they begin their 2014 nesting season along Maui beaches next month.

As sea turtles emerge onto beaches to lay their eggs, they leave distinctive 3 ft. wide tracks behind in the sand. Photo credit: Cheryl King.The public is advised to stay at least 30 feet away from nesting turtles and watch quietly, as they are easily disturbed.

Officials from the US Fish and Wildlife Service say the success of their nests is crucial for the survival of these threatened and endangered species.

In addition to keeping a safe distance, wildlife officials ask the public to immediately report sightings of nesting activity, fresh turtle tracks, nest hatchlings, or turtles in trouble by contacting one of the following individuals:

  • Skippy Hau, Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Aquatic Resources: (808) 243-5294
  • Courtney Brown, US Fish and Wildlife Service: (808) 268-6316, courtney_brown@fws.gov
  • Cheryl King, Hawai‘i Wildlife Fund: (808) 385-5464, mauihawksbills@gmail.com
> Read Entire Article online at MauiNow.com

Hawaii Wildlife Fund partners with Bluecology
New partnership expands HWF's volunteer, outreach opportunities

January 17, 2014 - MAUI, HI - Hawaii Wildlife Fund has formed a new partnership with a California-based marine nonprofit organization called Bluecology, which specializes in eco-travel and volunteer efforts. Working with Bluecology, HWF will offer new student field programs and volunteer vacations for adults on Maui. Through education, community service and outreach, the organizations will work together to further the cause of protection of Hawaii's threatened species and habitats.

"Hawaii Wildlife Fund depends on volunteers to help its core team conduct our native wildlife monitoring and habitat restoration projects," said Hawaii Wildlife Fund president Hannah Bernard, adding "Partnering with Bluecology will allow Hawaii Wildlife Fund to tap into a larger pool of volunteers and thus expand the research we are doing. This is a great opportunity for people who want to give back while having fun on vacation."

HWF has conducted conservation programs and projects on Maui and the island of Hawaii since 1996. Actively engaging local communities, HWF works to protect Hawaii's fragile marine ecosystem and wildlife through research, education and advocacy.

Based in California, Bluecology's senior staff has a combined 50 years of experience establishing community-based conservation and marine protected areas. They assist communities in Micronesia, Central and South America by providing experts and trained volunteers to help develop and implement a variety of conservation programs. The new partnership with HWF will expand Bluecology's reach to Hawaii.

Volunteerism is core to both organizations. The partnership expands the ways that individuals can become hands-on active participants in marine conservation. For those who do not wish to or are unable to take an active role in conservation efforts, they can help spread the word through social media. Also support through donations is always welcome.
> Donate to HWF
> Volunteer with HWF
> Learn more about Bluecology

Hawaii Wildlife Fund featured in Seattle Times
Make your Maui visit a 'volunteer vacation'

Copyright © 2013 Seattle Times
November 9, 2013 - MAUI, HI - The lowering sun glares in my eyes as I walk down a hill above Hookipa Beach, famed favorite of windsurfers. In a warm, gusting breeze, offshore surfers wait for breakers. Looking down over caramel-colored sand I spot a dark head bobbing in nearshore waves. Not human. With my Puget Sound mindset, I think, "Seal!"Make your Maui visit a ‘volunteer vacation’

But quickly I realize it's not a seal. It's a sea turtle.

As I watch, another appears, and another, then another — all aiming at the same corner of the bustling beach.

For months, dozens of green sea turtles have been showing up every evening at this same spot on Maui, hauling out on the sand to stay for hours. Naturalists call it "basking."

"We don’t quite understand why they chose this place, but once they did they have kept coming," says Hannah Bernard, president of the nonprofit Hawaii Wildlife Fund, which has organized an effort to help protect them. "No place in the world has as many basking turtles."

Visitors can photograph the turtles. Or they can have a richer experience: While on the island, they can volunteer as turtle monitors with Bernard’s group, helping to educate others about these endangered sea creatures the locals call "honu."

Helping the honu means spending a few hours on the beach, hardly a painful commitment. It's just one way to turn your island vacation into "voluntourism" — giving back some of the spirit of aloha.
> Read entire article online at the Seattle Times

Hawaii Wildlife Fund team protects fragile pools
From the muck, healthy anchialine pool habitats emerge

Copyright © 2013 West Hawaii Today
August 23, 2013 - MAUI, HI - Catherine Spina sank waist deep into the doughnut-shaped anchialine pool in coastal Waiohinu, carefully guiding the “Muck Sucker” along the bottom. This underwater vacuum, uses a trash pump to suck up excessive sediment, leaf litter and other organic matter — all of which are fouling the unique brackish water ecosystem.

photos by Anna Pacheco/Special to West Hawaii Today

Meanwhile, Megan Lamson, Stacey Breining and Lauren Kurpita hand-pulled and removed nonnative plant species, such as seashore paspalum, by the bucket load. Such invasive species are supplanting native vegetation, taking over the habitat. Floating in a borrowed yellow kayak, Nohea Kaawa and her sister, Kaila Olson, steadily gathered the accumulating limu (algae) into a slimy pile.

It’s dirty work, but these six Hawaii Wildlife Fund team members and volunteers laughed off the conditions Tuesday as part of the rewarding experience of repairing damage and improving the environment.

Over the past five years, Hawaii Wildlife Fund has removed nonnative vegetation in and around the Hoonoua anchialine pool complex, which includes two large pools and one small pool within 1,400 acres of shoreline in southeast Hawaii Island.
> Read entire article at WestHawaiiToday.com

Study links injection wells, nearshore flows
Challenge now to figure out solution, says Bernard of HWF

Copyright © 2013 The Maui News
July 25, 2013 - MAUI, HI - The final results of a University of Hawaii study on the impacts of injection wells at the Lahaina wastewater treatment plant "conclusively demonstrate" a connection between the wells and their flows to nearshore waters.

The results of the study were released Wednesday by four Maui citizen groups and Earthjustice, which filed a lawsuit on behalf of the groups against Maui County in U.S. District Court for "illegally discharging wastewater into the ocean from its Lahaina treatment facility's injection wells."

"This study confirms what we've been saying for years, wastewater injected at the Lahaina facility travels underground and ends up in the ocean offshore of Kahekili Beach, contributing pollutants to near-shore waters," said Caroline Ishida, attorney for Earthjustice, which filed the lawsuit for Hawai'i Wildlife Fund, Surfrider Foundation, Sierra Club-Maui Group and the West Maui Preservation Association.

[Article truncated]

Hannah Bernard of the Hawai'i Wildlife Fund said that while the UH study did not look into the environmental effects of the wastewater seepage, other studies have shown that water quality and temperature "can cause impacts on the reefs." Excess nutrients can be attributed to algal blooms, she added.
> Read entire article at MauiNews.com

Marine debris connects filmmaker with HWF
Hawaii Wildlife Fund provides info for Japanese video project

HWF's Megan Lamson is featured in this video created by Japanese students.
HWF's Megan Lamson is featured in this video created by Japanese filmmaker Atsuko Quirk. Lamson appears at about the 3-minute mark. > Watch video
JAPAN - JULY 2013 Hawaii Wildlife Fund provided information for a documentary created by Japanese filmmaker Atsuko Quirk about students studying marine debris washing ashore in Japan. Quirk posted her video on the website Kickstarter this summer in an effort to bring the global issue of marine debris into focus and raise funds for the project. As part of her research, she contacted HWF's Megan Lamson, who is featured in the documentary showing the 9th grade students (via Skype) some Japanese items that her team has found on Hawaiian shores through HWF's Hawai'i Island Marine Debris Removal Project.
> Watch video

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