Thursday, July 09, 2020
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Monday, December 25, 2017
Four Months Later no Rats on Lehua Island
By News Release @ 11:50 PM :: 3374 Views :: Environment

ENCOURAGING SIGNS FROM LEHUA ISLAND SHOW NO RATS

Continued Monitoring Underway

News Release from Hawaii DLNR, December 25, 2017

(Lihue, Kaua‘i) – People monitoring the ecosystem recovery on tiny Lehua Island report that - four months after the conclusion of a rat eradication project - there are still no signs of the invasive Pacific Rats. For decades they’ve attacked native seabirds on Lehua, eating their eggs and chicks. Though Lehua Island Restoration Project partners won’t declare the eradication effort a complete success until next September, monitoring teams are tremendously encouraged by what they’re seeing.

“While we conducted our monitoring work we’d been looking for any sign of rat predation and rats. So far, we’ve seen no signs of rats anywhere on the island, which is a stark difference from trips before the rat eradication work began,” commented Dr. Andre Raine of the Kaua‘i Endangered Seabird Recovery Project (KESRP). His team spent two days last week surveying an albatross colony on the steep cliffs of the north side of the island. Raine explains they did a thorough survey of the entire area, counting nesting Laysan and Black-footed Albatrosses and pinpointing each nests location with GPS. “This year we have lots of albatross out here which is great; about 145,” Raine said. This is the second monitoring trip by the KESRP team since the last of three aerial applications of rodenticide in September. Raine and other scientists from Island Conservation and DLNR who’ve conducted separate excursions all report no signs of rats.

All of the monitoring teams have hopeful stories to share. For instance, in late September, the KESRP team recorded a Bulwer’s petrel chick on a game camera exercising outside its burrow. Dr. Raine gets animated when he explains, “This is the first time we have ever seen this on Lehua, as this species is a favored prey of the rats. The chick had this crazy little “hair-do” of down on his head, which was waving about in the wind; it was really cute. If the rats are truly gone we should see this happening more and more - the tiny ground-nesting seabirds in particular should really start increasing in numbers.”

The restoration project is not just aimed at protecting and increasing seabird populations, but it is intended to create a “habitat-level transformation.” Rats also devoured the seeds and leaves of many of the native plants that support other life on Lehua Island. Planting of endemic species of plants is expected to start next year.

The restoration team points to similar projects, like the burgeoning albatross colony at O‘ahu’s Ka‘ena Point Natural Area Reserve, as a shining example of how seabird populations can recover when protected from predators like rats. At Ka‘ena Point a predator-proof fence also keeps cats and other predators away from albatross and other bird species.

Raine concluded, “If the rats are gone, we should see a lot more seabirds out here – populations increasing rapidly as more and more chicks fledge instead of being eaten by rats. Lehua can hold a hell of a lot more birds than are currently here. So we’d expect to see huge increases in population sizes and hopefully new species appearing. The future is looking bright for the island and its native seabirds!”

# # #

 

RESOURCES

(Images and video courtesy: DLNR unless otherwise noted)

Lehua Restoration Project Update Feature: https://vimeo.com/248600348

Lehua Project Update Video Feature 12-25-17

This video is about Lehua Project Update Video Feature 12-25-17

HD media clips & Dr. Andre Raine SOTS: (shot sheet/transcriptions attached) -- https://vimeo.com/248649769

Lehua Project Update, Media Clips

This video is about Lehua Project Update, Media Clips

LINK: Photographs

 

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

808 State Update AM940

ABCDEFG Blog

ACA Signups Hawaii

ACCE

ALEC

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Life Advocates

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

American Mothers of Hawaii

AMVETS-Hawaii

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Audit The Rail

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii 

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust 

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

CAFR Hawaii

Castaway Conservative

Children's Alliance Hawaii

Children's Rights Institute

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Citizens for Recall

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

CSIS Pacific Forum

DAR Hawaii

DeedySupport.com

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

E Māua Ola i Moku o Keawe

Farmers For Choice Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Get Off Your Butts!

God, Freedom, America

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aganst Assisted Suicide

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crime Victims' Rights

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defending Marriage

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Firearm Community

Hawaii Fishermen's Alliance

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii Meth Project

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Right to Life -- Big Island

Hawaii Right to Life -- Oahu

Hawaii Shield Law Coalition

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HI Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

HIEC.Coop 

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Homeless Crisis

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

Horns of Jericho Blog

House Minority Blog

House Republican Caucus YouTube

HPACC

Hump Day Report

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

KeyWiki

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii

NARTH

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Hawaiian

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons 

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

SIFE Remington

SIFE W. Oahu 

Sink the Jones Act

Smart About Marijuana--Hawaii

St Marianne Cope

State Budget Solutions Hawaii

State Policy Network

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Harriet Tubman Agenda

The Long War Journal

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Truth About Trade & Technology - Hawaii

UCC Truths

Union Members Know Your Rights

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

Valor in the Pacific

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT