Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Andy Carre, Papahanaumokuakea Marine Debris Project

A crew returned from the northernmost islands in the Hawaiian archipelago this week with a boatload of marine plastic and abandoned fishing nets that threaten to entangle endangered Hawaiian monk seals and other animals on the uninhabited beaches stretching more than 1,300 miles north of Honolulu.

Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument / Public Domain / Flickr

Scientists are using an established DNA technique to discover just what lives in the deep coral reefs of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Think of it as a CSI for marine ecosystems.

Taylor Williams/NOAA

When Hurricane Walaka passed through the French Frigate Shoals as a category three hurricane last October, it left massive destruction of the coral reef, researchers recently found. Scientists also discovered an invasive algae overgrowing native corals and native algae at Pearl and Hermes Atoll.

NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research, Hohonu Moana 2016


Among those intently watching the storm are scientists preparing for a research expedition out to the Northwest Hawaiian islands. Biologist Chris Kelley is planning to leave this week to begin charting a seamount in Papahanaumokuakea.

Albatross Colony Under Threat from Unlikely Predator

Apr 5, 2018
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A remote atoll within the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is home to an extraordinary collection of seabirds. More than 3 million converging on a tiny space: some 1500 acres. It’s the only nesting ground for two seabird species that face an imminent threat from an unlikely source: invasive house mice that attack and kill nesting Black-footed albatross and Laysan albatross.


Northwest Hawaiian Islands Coral Health; Economic Slowdown; Gender Pay Gap

Papahānaumokuākea is one of three marine monuments that has won an international award.

Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

The Papahānaumokuākea National Marine Monument is under review by the Department of the Interior…and the public will be able submit comments.

James Watt
James Watt

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs has been named as co-trustee to the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument.  The area is the largest fully protected conservation area in the US, encompassing 583,000 square miles of ocean, small islands, and atolls in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.  It's home to more than 7,000 marine species, a quarter of which are found only in the Hawaiian Archipelago.  It’s also a significant cultural site to Native Hawaiians, containing both historical and spiritual places.

The Conversation: Friday, August 26th, 2016

Aug 26, 2016

Outlook for Wahiawa General; Musical Tour of South America; Affordability of Public Universities; Hawaiian Land Trust

Town Square: Expansion of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument

Jun 22, 2016
USFWS - Pacific Region / Flickr
USFWS - Pacific Region / Flickr

  Town Square: Senator Schatz sent his proposal to expand the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument to the President for his consideration. But what do both conservationists who liked the original idea and the fishermen who opposed it say about this new proposal?