Molokai residents brought a bag full of suggestions and concerns to a visit from the head of one of the largest branches of the state government – the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). From discussions about protecting subsistence lifestyles to management of wind, water and other resources, DLNR Chairperson William “Bill” Aila interacted with residents for nearly two hours during his first visit to Molokai.
Aila, who was appointed DLNR chairperson by Gov. Abercrombie in November 2010, talked story with local residents as part of a statewide series. The meeting was unusual because Aila’s visit was not to address a particular project or issue, but instead simply to listen. The gesture was appreciated by Molokai residents, who repeatedly thanked him for his effort and openness.
a lot more significant” than on other islands, Aila said after the meeting.
Other issues included allowing residents to restore exposed graves in Mana`e, which Aila said he would directly address with the Burial Council during a return visit he’s planning in November; fixing the water supply so that new water meters may be allowed in East Molokai; supporting the Molokai Invasive Species Committee and Plant Extinction Prevention Program; removing asbestos from the old Coast Guard stations at Ilio Point; and formalizing DLNR outreach with `Aha Ki`ole.
Community Contributed by Walter Ritte
For the past 15 years Molokai has been seriously trying to stop the decline of it’s near shore fisheries. In 1994 Governor John Waihe’e created the Governors Molokai Subsistence Task Force, which officially recognized the importance of the subsistence economy on Molokai. The task force found that up to 38 percent of our food consumption on Molokai came from gathering in the ocean and on the land. The task force identified three major problems, 1) Off-island people who take to much, 2) Taking of undersized juveniles and 3) Lack of access.
The Molokai Aha Kiole has been working for months with WESPAC (Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council), an arm of NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) in a state wide effort to bring management over our resources down to the local level.
Through state wide meetings, each island has been charged to present their three top issues. The Molokai Aha Kiole presented their top two issues on Friday Sept. 23 to WESPAC. First, the need to lift the federal ban on the Hawaiian Green Turtle to allow for traditional subsistence use, and second, the need to stop the practice of off island escort boats raiding our shorelines during canoe races and other Molokai to Oahu and Maui to Molokai races.
Five years of talks with the Canoe Racing Associations have proven no meaningful results. The issue is alarmingly headed to confrontational solutions.
Molokai residence have taken it upon themselves to monitor and patrol the coast line to “educate” the escort boats and letters have been sent out to explain “nicely” the concerns of the subsistence users of our coastal fisheries. We hope the State and Federal Governments will help resolve this issue since the organizers of these races do not want to recognize their “Kuleana” when they come to Molokai to race.
Subsistence use of our near shore fisheries is not a matter of recreational use, it is a matter of survival.
Community contributed by ‘Aha Ki’ole ‘o Moloka’i
Community Contributed by `Aha Ki`ole o Molokai
“No dog is worth your life,” says Kaimana He, sitting in front of his house. Small scratches are faintly visible on his face; in the sun, the remnants of bruises are fading around his ribs.
His mother, Tina He-Lindsey, agrees.
“Even with the most experienced people, accidents still happen,” she says.
The pair knows what they’re talking about. It was only weeks earlier that He-Lindsey came home to a jolting phone call from family friend Dolphin Pawn: While trying to retrieve his dogs on a hunting trip with friends through Waialeia Valley that morning, Kaimana had fallen off a ledge more than 40 feet. He had a large gash on his forehead; the full extent of his injuries was unknown. Pawn, who was hunting with a separate party, stumbled across the boys and used his dogs’ GPS collars to pinpoint Kaimana’s location.
Sore and bloody, the 17-year-old would need to be airlifted to a hospital.
“It was a terrible day, our worst nightmare,” He-Lindsey says. “The first thing I did was pray to God to keep him safe, to comfort him and ask my grandfather to watch over him. … When you’re completely helpless to your own child, that’s reason enough to panic.”
Kaimana and his friends left Kaunakakai about 4 a.m. on Sept. 3, planning to trek into the Molokai Forest Reserve to hunt boar. For Kaimana, pig-hunting is
,” he says. “The mountains may be beautiful but they can take your life.”
The number of Hawaiian monk seals alive in the world is diminishing rapidly, but officials do not think their fate is sealed. That’s why the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is proposing actions they believe may help the recovery of the critically endangered species.
Some of those actions include population monitoring, behavior modification of seals (to discourage human interaction), health and disease control and translocation. While a few of these activities are already practiced under current federal permits, the NMFS is seeking new permits to implement and allow more actions.
The impact of these actions is currently being examined through a process called a Programmatic Environment Impact Statement (PEIS.) That process involves the collection of data, the examination of environmental, cultural and social impacts of the proposed recovery actions and public feedback.
In a hearing about the PEIS held on Molokai last Thursday, community members and fishermen offered their opinion on the proposals. Many expressed concerns about the large amount of fish Hawaiian monk seals eat – fish that they say could be going to feed their families.
“The point we are trying to make is fish is very important food source for us,” said fisherman Walter Naki.
Others didn’t support officials tampering with nature.
“We love the monk seals but we have to find the right balance – we are not God to say we’re going to put them here because they’re extinct,” said resident Eddie Tanaka.
here way before us,” said resident Loretta Ritte.
Sprague said if permitting and funding goes through, the soonest seals would be temporarily translocated would be 2013.
The public has until Oct. 17 to submit comments on the PEIS. The PEIS process is scheduled for completion in late 2011. Visit nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/eis/hawaiianmonkseal.htm for more information. Comments may be emailed to email@example.com or mailed to:
Office of Protected Resources, Pacific Islands Regional Office
1601 Kapiolani Blvd, Ste 1110
Honolulu, HI 96814
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has proposed actions to help preserve the endangered Hawaiian monk seals. Below, students reflect on how they feel about the native species and human interactions with them.
We should all come together and protect the Hawaiian Monk seals. Without our help the next generations would be without Hawaiian Monk seals. They wouldn’t get to experience what we did with them. I hope that everyone can just forget what bad things they do and find a way to help them out.
It’s a Saturday morning in Kalae, and the woods are quiet – until, suddenly, they’re pierced by the sound of a whistle. Moments later, dozens of “pop pop pops” seem to come from across the two-and-a-half-acre course all at once, as colorful arrows catapult through the air and lodge themselves in cardboard bales. The Molokai Bowhunters Association (MBA) is kicking off its marked animal target competition, an annual event sanctioned by the National Field Archery Association (NFAA).
As the tournament progresses, other sounds filter through the tall trees: laughter among friends as they move along the
guys to come out.”
Damien Pires, who has participated for about 10 years, said part of the fun is getting to hang out with old friends.
“I like getting back together with my friends from Maui, picking them up from the ferry,” he said. “We’re just having fun.”
First-place youth finishers included Kaheki Cuello (pee-wee, 560 points), Kainoa Aragosi (youth, 471), Gyson Aalone (young adult bowhunter freestyle, 497) and Kelson Uradomo (young adult freestyler, 576). In the adult divisions, first place was awarded to Tachibana (bowhunter freestyle, 571), Michael Kinores (freestyler, 576), Barry Agtarap (freestyle limited, 505), Marshall Rocine (traditional, 320), Sonny Aragosi (bowhunter freestyle limited, 475), and Frank Pupuhi (bowhunter freestyle guest class, 566). In addition to NFAA patches, all first-place finishers received trophies.Lee thanked the tournament’s sponsors, which include MR Variety, Maka’s Corner, 808 Electric, Take’s Variety Store, Island Archery, and the Lee, Rapanot, Tancayo and Tachibana `ohanas, as well as Molokai’s bowhunters and everybody who participated.
The Main Hawaiian Island (MHI) bottomfish season opens Sept. 1, and the state’s Department of Aquatic Resources (DAR) wants to more accurately count how many “Deep 7” and other bottomfish are being pulled from the ocean.
Starting this year, commercial fishermen must report to the DAR all bottomfish catches within five days of each trip – a substantial change from previous years, when for-profit fishermen were required to submit a monthly bottomfish catch report.
Officials said the changes will allow the DAR to collect more accurate data, which will help them better manage Hawaii’s fisheries.
However, some local fishermen feel their livelihood is being overregulated.
The first keiki fishing tournament on Molokai proved a success on July 2, with more than 125 entries. The goal of the shoreline tournament on the island’s east end was to give children the chance to learn how to fish, practice catch and release techniques and most of all, have fun. More than 100 fish were caught, all weighing less than one pound. Entrants were judged on biggest catch or most caught.
The free event provided each child with a bamboo pole including bait, line, hooks lead, and floater. Three categories divided contestants by age, ranging from 2 to 12. First place in every category received a bike, while second and third places were awarded a cooler of fishing gear, and a fishing pole and tackle, respectively. All entrants received smaller prizes for participating.
One of the tournament’s organizers, Jr Kalawe, said he has participated in many fishing events himself, and wanted to give his son the same opportunity. He added the event was such a success that they’re already planning it again for next year.
Keiki Fishing Tournament Results
Ages 2 to 5:
1. Olana Phifer
2. David Lima English
3. Tie: Khloe Bicoy, Tyahahua Cuello, Kailani Bicoy
Ages 6 to 9:
1. Taua Lima English
2. CJ Adolpho
3. Maya Lima, Saven Ka`ahanui
Ages 10 to 12:
1. Treyden Kalilikane
2. Kaniela Kaupu
3. Kea Sumarnap