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Rare and endangered species of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park; endangered, threatened, and rare animal, plant, and community handbook

December 21, 2011

Introduction

Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park (HAVO) is the largest area in the State of Hawai`i protected for its geology and landscapes and its native flora and fauna. The park covers approximately 135,000 hectares or 333,000 acres in all. These lands stretch from the seacoast of Kīlauea Volcano to far above timberline on the summit of Mauna Loa (Figure 1). This vast area includes expanses of forests, woodlands, shrublands, and barren lava flows that represent an array of native ecosystems. Contained within these communities are a great many species of rare animals and plants, most of them unique to the island of Hawai`i, and some of them surviving only in the park. These are the biological treasures of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.

Our book is a guide to all animal and plant species in HAVO that are specially recognized as endangered species in the general sense. (The official designations at four levels and the unofficial designation of species of concern are explained later.) There are 23 such animal species and 71 plant species covered in the handbook, including six species planted in HAVO but not naturally occurring. In addition, we describe seven rare communities.

In some cases, HAVO offers the best opportunity to save these species and communities from extinction. Increasingly, the park has attempted to restore rare populations by conducting surveys to locate them, controlling threats such as feral livestock, and bolstering existing populations or creating new ones by planting nursery stock. To aid such efforts, our original intent was to publish an identification guide for researchers and field management personnel. Particularly, we wanted to familiarize the reader with the many rare plant species which otherwise are known mainly from the technical literature. Because we soon came to realize that this handbook would be useful to a much larger, general readership, our aim is to make this information available to anyone interested in endangered animals and plants at Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2011
Title Rare and endangered species of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park; endangered, threatened, and rare animal, plant, and community handbook
DOI
Authors Linda W. Pratt, Thane K. Pratt, David Foote, P. Marcos Gorresen
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype Other Report
Series Title Technical Report
Series Number HCSU-025
Index ID 70040342
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center