One of the main missions of State management is to monitor and study the populations and health of Kure Atoll’s birds, plants, arthropod, and coral reef community. 

While the management board of PMNM plays lead roles in endangered species work on Kure, DLNR operates in coordination with those agencies to be the “eyes and ears” on the ground.

By adapting the most recent recovery plans within the ESA, MMPA, and multiple state statutes, ensures that the monitoring activities on-island is a supportive and dedicated level of protection.

Collaborative Management is Key to Protecting Wildlife & Remote Areas

The aim is to understand the distribution and functional linkages of organisms and their habitats in order to improve ecosystem-based management decisions. The areas that monitoring focuses on are biodiversity, ecological interconnectivity, environmental change, and human impact.

Kure Atoll seabird monitoring program started in 2000. One of the primary focuses of state management aims to understand what influences nesting success and survival rates through monitoring nesting and chick survival.

These vegetation plots are 80 sites sampled twice every year in the highest impacted habitat on Kure. They are measured for a percentage vegetation coverage assessment. In conjunction with seabird monitoring data, and other relevant monitoring data, helps determine the best way forward for increase survivorship within seabird nesting habitats. 

MONK SEAL MONITORING

One marine mammal, `Ilio-holo-i-ka-uaua, or the Hawaiian monk seal (Monachus schauinslandi), is the most endangered endemic marine mammal in the United States. The monk seal population on Kure Atoll faces the same survival challenges as other Hawaiian populations, such as starvation, intra-species aggression and lethal entanglement in derelict fishing gear or other marine pollution.

LAYSAN TEAL MONITORING

Once a widely distributed population across the Hawaiian archipelago, and now 400-500 breeding pairs, the Laysan Duck is endangered and have had multiple translocation attempts. In 2014, after years of habitat restoration work and coordinating with multiple agencies, 28 pairs were apart of the first translocation from Midway to Kure.

ECOLOGICAL MONITORING

The team works with partners and other managers to do everything they can to “keep a lookout” on all wildlife and species on Kure. In lieu of balancing the overall workload, some of these monitoring surveys are conducted alongside larger work objectives. These species include Spinner dolphins, honu, shorebirds, vagrant birds, and pest monitoring.