Maui’s native birds and bees getting protection money from the feds
The Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources will receive $1.7 million from the US Fish and Wildlife Service to protect native forest birds, waterbirds, seabirds and yellow-faced bees.
The federal funding will support several conservation projects, including three on Maui.
“Our native bird and bee populations are in danger due to shrinking habitats, disease-carrying mosquitoes and expanding predator populations,” said US Sen. Brian Schatz, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. “This new federal funding will directly combat these dangers.”
The federal funding comes through the Competitive State Wildlife Grant Program, designed to conserve species in approved State Wildlife Action Plans. The programs protect imperiled species and their habitat from further harm, and in some cases prevent them from going on the endangered species list. The total funding for Hawaiʻi includes:
- $498,558 to combat the threat of avian malaria and protect Hawaiian forest birds on Kauaʻi and Maui
- $249,477 to conserve the habitat and resources of yellow-faced bees on Maui
- $169,068 to establish a protected breeding colony for the endangered ‘akeke‘e on Maui
- $587,337 to protect and monitor endangered seabirds and ecosystems on Hawaiʻi Island
- $219,258 to support enhanced mongoose control techniques that will protect Hawaiian waterbirds on O‘ahu
The new money follows $14 million in federal funding the state received last month to combat avian malaria, a deadly disease transmitted by mosquitoes, and protect native birds, including the ʻakikiki and ‘akeke‘e on Kaua‘i and the kiwikiu and ‘ākohekohe on Maui.