Maui News

Invasive Pine Control Effort Continues at Haleakalā

August 14, 2015, 11:38 AM HST
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GPS photo of the pine locations. Photo courtesy Haleakalā National Park.

GPS photo of the pine locations. Photo courtesy Haleakalā National Park.

By Maui Now Staff

Haleakalā National Park staff will hold a public meeting to outline a pine control project as work continues to control three non-native species.

Haleakalā National Park is proposing to use contracted helicopters to control up to 3,000 invasive pine trees in the park.

Three non-native pine species include the Monterey pine, Mexican weeping pine, and maritime pine, that are spreading through the iconic crater.

Park representatives say these pines displace endemic and endangered species, change soil chemistry, and increase the potential for wildfire in habitats not adapted to fire.

Photo courtesy of Matt Wordeman, President of Friends of Haleakalā.

File photo courtesy of Matt Wordeman, President of Friends of Haleakalā. In Dec. 2014, volunteers removed close to 500 invasive pine trees from the Puʻu Nianiau area near the entrance to Haleakalā National Park. The fresh pines became Christmas trees for Maui families while the greenery was collected for the Montessori School of Maui holiday fundraiser.

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The trees are located on terrain and cliffs that are too steep or remote for park staff to safely access on foot.

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“The removal will conserve the unique volcanic crater views and protect species that depend on native habitats for survival,” Park representatives said. No trail, campground, road, cabin, or other closures are planned during this project.

The first phase of the project was conducted in December 2014.

The meeting is scheduled to run from 5 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 20, 2015 at the Keōkea Community Center.

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Park employees will give a short presentation and answer questions about the project during the meeting.

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