Advocating For Positive Change

Our team conducts a wide variety of scientific research focused on conserving Hawai‘i’s native wildlife. We share our findings with other scientists, the public, and our elected officials to influence and advocate for change.

Sea Turtles

This material from various International Sea Turtle Symposia (ISTS) is available for you to download.

Marine Debris

This material from the 6th International Marine Debris Conference (6IMDC) is available for you to download.

Anchialine Pools

This material from the 4th International Symposia on Anchialine Ecosystems (4ISAE) that took place in October 2018 in Lanzarote, Spain is available to download.  Please contact us for our presentation from the 3ISAE event from Mérida, México in 2015.

Great news!  HWF will co-host the 5ISAE event on Hawai‘i Island in ~ Oct – Nov 2022 with DLNR Division of Aquatic Resources, The Nature Conservancy of Hawai‘i, DLNR Hawai‘i State Parks, plus many other partners statewide including the Hui Loko (wetland working group) network, and the ISAE organizing committee.

Short-range Movements of Hawksbill Turtles

Hawksbill sea turtles reside around the main Hawaiian Islands but are not common. Nine hawksbill turtles were tracked within the Hawaiian Islands using satellite telemetry to determine their nesting and foraging areas.

Results of this study suggest that their movements are relatively short-ranged, and surveys of their foraging areas should be conducted to assess status of the habitat to enhance conservation and management of these areas.

Click here to read the Parker et al. 2009 study with contributions from HWF.

Click here for more info about the Animal Telemetry Network tagged “Mama Hua” hawksbill from Maui in 2020!

short-range-movements-of hawksbill-seas-turtles

Researchers study Hawaiian volcanic eruption effects on marine wildlife

Hilo, Hawaiʻi – January 2019 – Hawaiʻi Wildlife Fund recently completed a Marine Resource Reconnaissance Survey along the Hawaiʻi island coastline following the May 2018 eruption of the Kīlauea volcano.

Our researchers’ aim was to provide accurate information about the health and state of sea turtles and other marine animals following reports of stranded and impacted turtles during the course of the lava flow.

We flew over the impacted area on two occasions taking aerial photos and recording observations of wildlife, new anchialine pool habitats and marine debris. The project was supported financially by an anonymous donor and has been submitted to more than 20 scientists and wildlife managers for peer review.

Click here for the Puna Aerial Reconnaissance Survey Press Release.

Click here for the Puna Aerial Reconnaissance Survey​ – Final Report.

Selected Publications

(This is not a comprehensive list!  Authors with HWF affiliation at the time of publication are bolded below.)

Anchialine Pools

  • Keith, D.A., Ferrer-Paris, J., Nicholson, E. and R. Kingsford (plus 75 more contributing authors of individual sections). IUCN Global Ecosystem Typology v2.0: Descriptive profiles for Biomes and Ecosystem Functional Groups, March 2021, Gland, Switzerland, 170 pp. – available here [See SM 1.2 Anchialine Pools – Contributors: T.S. Sakihara, M. Lamson, B. Seidel, D.M. Sedar, S. Santos, J. Havird, T.M. Iliffe, D.A. Keith]

Coral Reefs, Community-based Management & Fisheries

  • Bernard, H.J. 1998. Na Pale O Ke Kai, Maui Coastal Volunteer Monitoring Project, Final Rept. Hawai‘i Dept. of Health. ASO Log No. 97-254, 94 pp.
  • Lamson, M.R., McNaughton, B., and Severance, C.J. n.d. Reanalysis and expansion of the 2005 Hawai‘i State/Fishery Council bottomfish fisherman’s survey. Presented to the Science and Statistical Committee of the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council. June 2007, Honolulu.
  • Kramer, K., Cotton, S., Lamson, M., and Walsh, W. 2016. Bleaching and catastrophic mortality of reef-building corals along west Hawai‘i island: findings and future directions in Proceedings of the 13th International Coral Reef Symposium, June 19-24, 2016, Honolulu, USA, pp. 219-230.
  • Walsh, W.J., Cotton, S., Jackson, L., Lamson, M., Martin, R., Osada-D’Avella, K., and L. Preskitt. 2013. First record of Acropora gemmifera in the main Hawaiian Islands. Coral Reefs. doi: 10.1007/s00338-013-1092-3

Marine Debris

  • Brignac, K.C., Jung, M.R., King, C., Royer, S-J, Blickley, L., Lamson, M.R., Potemra, J.T., and J.M. Lynch. 2019. Marine Debris Polymers on Main Hawaiian Island Beaches, Sea Surface, and Seafloor. Env Sci & Tech 53 (21): 12218-12226. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.9b03561
  • Carson, H.S., Lamson, M.R., Nakashima, D., Toloumu, D., Hafner, J., Maximenko, N., and K.J. McDermid. 2013. Tracking the sources and sinks local marine debris in Hawai’i. Marine Environmental Research 84: 76-83.
  • Lamson, M. R., Gilmartin, W.G., and K.T. Woollven. 2011. Seven Years “Net” Progress a.k.a. Picking up the Pieces on Hawaiʻi Island. Presentation at the 5th International Marine Debris Conference, Honolulu, Hawaiʻi. Abstract No. 286. In: Carswell, B., McElwee, K., and S. Morison (eds.), Technical Proceedings of the Fifth International Marine Debris Conference, March 20-25, 2011, Honolulu, USA, pp. 379-382. U.S. Dep. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NOS-OR&R-38.
  • Maximenko, N., Paolo, C., Law, K.L., Van Sebille, E., Garaba, S.P., Lampitt, R.S., Galgani, F., Martinez-Vicente, V., Goddijn-Murphy, L., Veiga, J.M., Thompson, R. C., Maes, C., Moller, D., Löscher, C.R., Addamo, A.M., Lamson, M.R., Centurioni, L.R., Posth, N.R., Lumpkin, R. Rick, Vinci M., Martins, A.M., Pieper, C.D., Isobe, A.A., Hanke, G., Edwards, M., Chubarenko, I.P., Rodriguez, E., Aliani, S., Arias, M., Asner, G.P., Brosich, A., Carlton, J.T., Chao, Y., Cook, A-M, Cundy, A.B., Galloway, T.S., Giorgetti, A., Goni, G.J., Guichoux, Y., Haram, L.E., Hardesty, B.D., Holdsworth, N., Lebreton, L., Leslie, H.A., Macadam-Somer, I., Mace, T., Manuel, M., Marsh, R., Martinez, E., Mayor, D.J., Le Moigne, M., Molina, J.M.E., Mowlem, M.C., Obbard, R.W., Pabortsava, K., Robberson, B., Rotaru, A.-E., Ruiz, G.M., Spedicato, M.T., Thiel, M., Turra, A., and C. Wilcox. 2019. Toward the Integrated Marine Debris Observing System. Frontiers in Marine Science 6: 2296-7745. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2019.00447

Monk Seals

  • Bernard, H.J. 2004. Watching Out for Makana. Maui No Ka Oi 8 (2): 42-57.
  • Gilmartin, W.G., Johanos, T.C., DeMaster, D.P., and J. R. Henderson. 2011. Hawaiian Monk Seals (Monachus schauinslandi) at Kure Atoll: Some Life History Effects Following Effort to Enhance Pup Survival. Aquatic Mammals 37(3): 326-331.
  • Gilmartin, W. G., Sloan, A.C., Harting, A.L., Johanos, T.C., Baker, J.D., Breese, M., and T.J. Ragen. 2011. Rehabilitation and Relocation of Young Hawaiian Monk Seals (Monachus schauinslandi). Aquatic Mammals 37(3): 332-341.
  • Gilmartin, W. G. and J. Forcada. 2002. Monk seals (Monachus monachus, M. tropicalis, and M. schauinslandi). In: Perrin, W.F., B. Wursig, and J.G.M. Thewissen (editors), Encyclopedia of Marine Mammals. Academic Press, San Diego, California.
  • Gilmartin, W. G. 1983. Recovery plan for the Hawaiian monk seal, Monachus schauinslandi. [Written in cooperation with the Hawaiian Monk Seal Recovery Team.] Southwest Fisheries Center Honolulu Laboratory, National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, 29 pp.
  • Johanos, T.C., Becker, B.L., Baker, J. D., Tagen, T.J., Gilmartin, W. G., and T. Gerrodette. 2010. Impacts of sex ratio reduction on male aggression in the endangered Hawaiian monk seal (Monachus schauinslandi). Endangered Species Research 11: 123-132.
  • Lowry, L. L., Laist, D.W., Gilmartin, W.G., and G. A. Antonelis. 2011. Recovery of the Hawaiian Monk Seal (Monachus schauinslandi): A Review of Conservation Efforts, 1972 to 2010, and Thoughts for the Future. Aquatic Mammals 37(3): 397-419.

Sea Turtles

  • Ellis, D.M., Balazs, G.H., Gilmartin, W.G., Murakawa, S.K.K., and L.K. Katahira. 2000. Short-range reproductive migrations of hawksbill turtles in the Hawaiian Islands as determined by satellite telemetry. In: F.A. Abreu- Grobois, R. Briseno-Duenas, R. Marquez-Millan, and L. Sarti-Martinez (comps.), Proceedings of the 18th International Symposium on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation, March 3-7, 1998, Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico, pp. 252-253. U.S. Dep. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-SEFSC-436.
  • Gaos, A. R., Kurpita, L., Bernard, H., Sundquist, L., King, C. S., Browning, J. H., Naboa, E., Kelly, I.K., Downs, K., Eguchi, T., Balazs, G., Van Houtan, K., Johnson, D., Jones, T.T., and S. L. Martin. 2021. Hawksbill Nesting in Hawai‘i: 30-Year Dataset Reveals Recent Positive Trend for a Small, Yet Vital Population. Frontiers in Marine Science 8: 2296-7745. doi: 10.3389/fmars.2021.770424 [Link to full PDF]
  • Gaos, A.R., LaCasella, E.L., Kurpita, L., Balazs, G., Hargrove, S., King, C., Bernard, H., Jones, T.T., and P.H. Dutton. 2020. Hawaiian hawksbills: a distinct and isolated nesting colony in the Central North Pacific Ocean revealed by mitochondrial DNA. Conservation Genetics. doi: 10.1007/s10592-020-01287-1
  • Graham, S. C. 2009. Analysis of the foraging ecology of hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) on Hawai`i Island: an investigation utilizing satellite tracking and stable isotopes. Thesis dissertation for the University of Hawai‘i – Hilo Tropical Conservation & Environmental Science Program’s Master of Science Degree. Hilo, Hawai‘i. USA. 31 pp. UMI Number 1467025.
  • King, C.S., Gilmartin, W., Hau, S., Canja, S., Bernard, H.J., Nakai, G., Grady, M., Williams, S., and A. Hebard. 2007. Nesting Hawksbill Turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) on the Island of Maui, Hawai‘i from 1996-2003. In: Mast, R.B., Hutchinson, B.J., and A. Hutchinson (comps.), Proceedings of the 24th Annual Symposium on Sea Turtle Biology and Conservation, Feb 22-29, 2004, San Jose, Costa Rica, pp. 134–135. U.S. Dept. Commer., NOAA Tech. Memo. NMFS-SEFSC-567.
  • Ligon, A. and H.J. Bernard. 2000. Characterization of Foraging and inter-nesting habitat for three hawksbill sea turtles off Maui, Hawai’i. Final Rept. to Pac. Basin Dev. Council Reef Monitoring Proposal Gen-138, Subcontract, 25 pp.
  • Parker, D.M., Balazs, G.H., King, C.M., Katahira, L. and W. Gilmartin. 2009. Short-range movements of hawksbill turtles from nesting to foraging areas within the Hawaiian Islands. Pacific Science 63 (3):371-382.

For a copy of any of these above publications, please contact us.