Hawaii Endangered Species Gain 157,000 Acres of Protected Habitat – More Than 100 Hawaiian Plants, Animals Get Critical Habitat Designations

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today protected 157,000 acres of critical habitat for 125 species of plants and animals from the Hawaiian islands of Molokai, Maui and Kahoolawe.

Click to view (warning large file)

Click to view (warning large file)

The species range from plants like Haleakala silversword; the state flower, mao hau hele (Hibiscus brackenridgei); and bird-pollinated lobelias as well as a tree snail and striking forest birds like the Akohekohe or crested honeycreeper. Invasive species, habitat loss and the effects from introduced pigs, goats and deer are the primary threats to these species.

“Critical habitat will speed restoration efforts for many of these imperiled species so I’m glad to see that happen,” said Loyal Mehrhoff, endangered species recovery director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “The Endangered Species Act continues to save hundreds of Hawaiian species from extinction and can be a significant force to save these species too.”

With more endangered species than any other state, Hawaii continues to be on the front line of the extinction crisis. The 135 species addressed in today’s rule include two birds, three snails and 130 plants. However, only 125 species actually received critical habitat. The final rule excluded critical habitat for 10 species. A total of 84,892 acres were excluded from critical habitat because they are included in management plans and agreements thought to benefit these species. An additional 29,170 acres were removed from critical habitat.

“The lack of designated critical habitat for these species is a concern if the management agreements do not hold up or are ineffective,” said Mehrhoff. “We’re also concerned with the removal of 9,800 acres of lowland rainforest from critical habitat designation on Maui.”

Man Goes Crazy on Mauna Kea – Damages Astronomy Facility

Hawaiʻi Island police are investigating a property damage complaint at one of the astronomy facilities on the summit of Mauna Kea on Tuesday morning (March 29).

VLAB Telescope

VLBA Telescope

Officers responded to a 9:30 a.m. report of a traffic accident involving a disorderly man at the summit of Mauna Kea. Further reports indicated that the man then attempted to forcibly enter one of the facilities.

Police arrested 30-year-old James Coleman of Kailua-Kona on suspicion of criminal property damage. He is being held at the South Hilo cellblock pending further investigation.

Doug Arnott from Arnotts Lodge reported the following from one of his guides:

Breaking News….apparently around 10:15 a vehicle attempted to break into VLBA telescope on Mauna Kea by ramming the Chain Link fence and once inside hitting other things…this is second hand info from one of my guides who had Cruise Ship guests at the Visitor Center.

Apparently Fire and Ambulance were called and Police are on the way…anyone gets better news…please post.

Statement from the National Radio Astronomy Observatory:

A lone attacker drove a vehicle onto the Mauna Kea station of the Very
Long Baseline Array (VLBA) Tuesday, damaging the installation’s fence,
building, and official vehicles. The attacker was apprehended by
law-enforcement officers. The station’s two employees were uninjured.

Initial reports indicate that the radio-telescope antenna is undamaged.
Site personnel are assessing the damage to the building.

The VLBA is a continent-wide radio telescope system, with ten,
25-meter-diameter dish antennas. The Mauna Kea antenna is the
westernmost, with one at St. Croix in the Caribbean, and eight on the
U.S. mainland. The VLBA is operated from the National Radio Astronomy
Observatory’s Science Operations Center in Socorro, New Mexico.

The VLBA is used by astronomers around the world to make high-resolution
images of celestial objects, and has made landmark contributions to our understanding of the Universe.

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National
Science Foundation, operated under cooperative agreement by Associated
Universities, Inc.

Hawaii Public Schools Score Big in National TV Competition

Hawaii schools walked away with 34 awards at the 13th annual Student Television Network (STN) competition in Atlanta, held March 10-13. Scroll down for the complete list of Hawaii winners.

stn

Close to 3,000 middle and high school students from across the U.S. gathered to compete in on-site, time-restricted contests in video journalism, television production, filmmaking, music videos, commercials, and public service announcements. All of the Hawaii schools that attended the competition are public schools and participants in PBS Hawaii’s HIKI NŌ student news network.

Last year, Hawaii schools brought home 28 awards from the STN Convention. As in the last few STN competitions, the number of awards won by Hawaii schools was notably high in comparison to states with larger populations, such as California, Florida, and Texas.

“Without a doubt, the stellar performance by Hawaii schools at STN is due to the work our schools have done with HIKI NŌ and PBS Hawaii,” said Kevin Matsunaga, Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School media teacher and STN regional board member. “Our students have developed solid technical and storytelling skills through our workshops throughout the year. Our Hawaii media teachers have worked tirelessly, as well, and the outstanding work their students have done at these competitions is proof that HIKI NŌ is making a huge difference in the lives of our students.”

The Hawaii school awards count was led by Maui Waena Intermediate’s nine, followed by Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School with eight, and Waianae High School with six. There were a number of first-time awardees among the Hawaii schools, including Kapolei High School, Waipahu Intermediate School, and Ewa Makai Middle School.

Ewa Makai media teacher Ethan Toyota said his students were “in shock” when they won two honorable mention awards in the commercial and public service announcement categories. “We wouldn’t be here without all the training and help HIKI NŌ has contributed in getting us off the ground,” he said.

“HIKI NŌ offers students the ideal preparation for this national competition and it also readies them for different professional paths — by teaching them to work their way through challenges and deliver quality work on tight deadlines,” said Leslie Wilcox, PBS Hawaii President and CEO.

“Congratulations to all of the students that participated in this rigorous competition in which they represented their schools and our state well,” said Kathryn Matayoshi, Hawaii Department of Education Superintendent. “PBS Hawaii is a valued partner for providing opportunities like HIKI NŌ. The teamwork and use of technology needed to create these quality productions align with the Department’s mission to help our students connect with their communities and be lifelong learners.”

2016 Student Television Network – Hawaii Winners:

MIDDLE SCHOOL CONVENTION RE-CAP

2nd Place – CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

3rd Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE (Maui)

HIGH SCHOOL CONVENTION RE-CAP

Honorable Mention — WAIANAE HIGH SCHOOL (Oahu)

MIDDLE SCHOOL SPOT FEATURE

2nd Place — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

3rd Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

LEAD STORY

3rd Place — MOANALUA HIGH SCHOOL (Oahu)

MAN ON THE STREET

3rd Place — MOANALUA HIGH SCHOOL (Oahu)

MIDDLE SCHOOL MOVIE TRAILER

Honorable Mention — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

MIDDLE SCHOOL NAT. PACKAGE (No announcer, only interview soundbites and natural sound)

1st Place — WAIANAE INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Oahu)

2nd Place — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

Honorable Mention—MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

MIDDLE SCHOOL COMMERCIAL

1st Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

Honorable Mention — EWA MAKAI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Oahu)

MIDDLE SCHOOL PSA (Public Service Announcement)

1st Place — CHIEFESS KAMAKHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

3rd Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

Honorable Mention — EWA MAKAI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Oahu)

MIDDLE SCHOOL BREAKING NEWS

1st Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

MIDDLE SCHOOL ANCHOR TEAM

1st Place — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

MIDDLE SCHOOL MUSIC VIDEO

1st Place — WAIPAHU INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Oahu)

2nd Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

Honorable Mention — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

HIGH SCHOOL MUSIC VIDEO

Honorable Mention — KAPOLEI HIGH SCHOOL (Oahu)

CRAZY 8’s (In these categories, schools had eight hours to complete an eight-minute show)

MIDDLE SCHOOL BROADCAST NEWS MAGAZINE

Honorable Mention — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

TV SCRIPTED SITCOM PILOT

Honorable Mention — WAIAKEA HIGH SCHOOL (Hawaii Island)

MIDDLE SCHOOL SHORT FILM—FICTION

1st Place — CHIEFESS KAMAKAHELEI MIDDLE SCHOOL (Kauai)

2nd Place — MAUI WAENA INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Maui)

3rd Place — WAIPAHU INTERMEDIATE SCHOOL (Oahu)

STN FILM EXCELLENCE AWARDS (entries submitted prior to the competition)

BEST FILM – LIVE ACTION – Waianae High School (Oahu)

BEST FILM – ANIMATED –Waianae High School (Oahu)

BEST MONTHLY NEWS BROADCAST – SOUTH PACIFIC REGION – Waianae High School (Oahu)

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY – Waianae High School (Oahu)

BEST SOUND DESIGN – ORIGINAL SCORE & MUSIC – Moanalua High School (Oahu)

BEST WRITING – Waianae High School (Oahu)

BEST DIRECTING – Moanalua High School (Oahu)

“Aloha From Lavaland” to Premier at Hawaii International Film Festival

Hawaiian Anthropological documentary Aloha From Lavaland is set to premiere on April 7 at the Hawaii International Film Festival.

lavaland2

Produced by three Big Island-based production companies, the film follows the aftermath of the 2014 eruption of Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano, which sent a flow of lava directly toward the center of Pahoa, a small rural town on the Big Island of Hawai’i. Hard to predict and impossible to stop, the flow threatened to cut off the town’s only access road, leaving the residents of this remote community to rely heavily on  one another as they prepare for possible isolation.

Produced in conjunction by Gift Culture Media, Larkin Pictures and Pure Mother Love, this 52 minute documentary explores an inner community perspective of the lava flow, following residents as they ask and answer important questions about community, sustainability, harmony, and what it really means to live in such an unpredictable paradise.

lavaland

In addition to street interviews and news coverage, the documentary follows a local Hawaiian kumu (healer), a sustainability expert and the leader of a sovereign Hawaiian community over a period of seven months as they attempt to prepare for the unpreparable.
“Puna is unlike any place I’ve ever lived,” says co-director Suzenne Seradwyn, who has created films in Los Angeles, New Mexico and Hawaii. “The people here have different values because of the natural elements at play, and the rich cultural history surrounding those elements. There is a very important message to share about what happens when you allow yourself to trust these elements.”

“This film is important for anyone living in a state of change, whether it be due to external elements or an internal shift,” says the film’s co-director, Phillips Payson. “Part of what this film explores is how one’s attitude toward change can make all the difference.” Before moving to the Big Island, Payson worked in the film industry in New York and Los Angeles. This is his fourth film.

The film will premiere at the Hawaii International Film Festival at the Dole Cannery on Thursday, April 7 at 6:15pm.

For more information, visit www.alohafromlavaland.com.