Professional and Rapid Relief to Wildlife Affected by Oil Spills, Disease Outbreaks and Natural Disasters
The Hawai’i Wildlife Center is the first and only facility in the Pacific Islands equipped with the facilities and expertise to respond to wildlife affected by oil spills, disease outbreaks and natural disasters.
Since Hawai‘i is an isolated island archipelago, the majority of its native terrestrial vertebrate life is avian. Of the more than 140 taxa of endemic birds known from the Hawaiian Islands, greater than half are extinct. Half of those that remain are threatened with extinction. There are more than fifteen million seabirds in the Hawaiian archipelago and the Island of Hawai‘i has the largest population of endemic and indigenous avian species in the State. HWC is a much-needed resource, assisting state and federal wildlife agencies in times of emergency and helping reverse the trends in declining avian populations.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE SERVICES PROVIDED
Contingency Planning Assistance
Development and execution of emergency response plans for main and remote islands
First Responder Training
- Proper response procedure
- Handling techniques
- Capture methods
- Basic stabilization
- Disease recognition
Provision of Rescue Kits and Response Supplies
- Rescue guides
- Bird capture equipment
- Basic field stabilization supplies
Response Management and Assistance
- Site assessment
- Staff supervision
- Wildlife capture
- Set-up of onsite stabilization satellites
- On-site triage
- Disease response
- Maintaining readiness of HWC facility for emergency response
Early detection of wildlife diseases and environmental contaminants
Mitigation Contract Fulfillment
Support agreements to fulfill wildlife mitigation requirements
THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING READY
Did you know? Hawai’i has more endangered species per square mile than anywhere else in the world. The coastal lands, reef ecosystems and waters of the Hawaiian archipelago provide habitat for over 14 million seabirds, plus several species of endangered wetland and remote island birds.
Although Hawai’i has no offshore oil platforms, we are still at high risk of major oil spills from tankers and other vessel traffic, as more than 90 percent or our energy comes from oil. On land, oil transporting pipelines and storage tanks create additional risk. Hawai’i is also at risk from natural disasters such as hurricanes and tsunamis that can affect critical wildlife habitats and populations and from disease outbreaks that can impact critical populations of threatened native birds.
HWC operates like a fire station. We need continued support to stay open and maintain response readiness. Waiting until an emergency happens to try to build this level of response capacity would be too late.