Diving into the barf! New insights into ʻAoʻū (Christmas Shearwater) foraging ecology from Hōlanikū (Kure Atoll)

October 21, 2021

Ilana Nimz, Ecologist at Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge

Ten years of active management on Hōlanikū (Kure Atoll) have yielded numerous successes. Primary restoration objectives for Hōlanikū included invasive species management, establishing native plants, removing marine debris and monitoring ecosystem changes. While a challenging location to conduct work, the successes achieved from the decade of habitat restoration on the island are undeniable. Join ecologist Ilana Nimz as she shares ten years of conservation efforts at Hōlanikū before focusing on the cryptic and understudied ʻAoʻū (Christmas/Chocolate shearwater; Puffinus nativitatis), one of the US Fish & Wildlife Service's 2021 Birds of Conservation Concern. The protected waters of Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument are critical for ʻAoʻū, as foraging grounds abundant with larval fish and protected from fisheries facilitates the recovery of the shearwater populations in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.

This presentation is part of the Third Thursday By the Bay Presentation Series at Mokupāpapa Discovery Center, which is the visitor center for Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument in Hilo, Hawaiʻi. This State of the Monument lecture series is also supported by the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation through a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.