Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Friday, Dec. 12, 2014

Turtle midwifery yesterday at Punalu`u with gentle hands helping baby honu `ea emerge from a nest and make their way to the ocean. Photo by Dave Berry
THE TREK OF BABY HAWKSBILL TURTLES to the ocean yesterday at Punalu`u drew volunteer protectors, researchers and school students. The human involvement began months ago with representatives of the Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Project, directed by Lauren Kurpita and Liz Ramson, who protect the eggs and keiki of this endangered species – called Honu `ea in Hawaiian.
A throng of students, volunteers and onlookers gather at Punalu`u to watch
the managed birth of hawksbill turtles in their sandy nests.
Photo by Dave Berry
      The researchers explained that they began their watch for development of nests 78 days ago. A 24-seven watch over the nests began two weeks ago. Over the past week, 70 hatchlings emerged. Eighteen hatched yesterday and were released with the help of school children guiding the tiny turtles into the ocean at Punalu`u. 
      The Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Turtle Project is a partnership of National Park Service, Hawai`i Natural History Association, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and U.S. Wildlife Service.
      Honu `ea come ashore only to nest, with confirmed sites from Ka`u into Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park at Awili Point, Pohue Bay, Kawa, Punalu`u, Kamehame, Halape and `Apua Point. More than 90 percent of the nests statewide are found on this island.
      According to the Turtle Recovery Project, some 80 Honu `ea each lay multiple nests each season, which can run from spring to early winter. The hawksbill can live more than 75 years and weigh as much as 300 pounds. The Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Project has protected more than 600 nests and assisted more than 65 thousand hatchlings making their way to the ocean since 1989.
Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Project staff and volunteers
tell the public about their efforts. Photo by Dave Berry
      After emerging from eggs in the sandy nests on the beach, hawksbills spend their lives at sea dining on sponges, unlike the green sea turtles that bask on the shore at Punalu`u. Threats to the hawksbill include lights that disorient their journey to and from the ocean, fishing nets and other floating debris which can entangle and drown them, plastic bags and other choking litter, driving on the beach where vehicles can destroy nests and development close to nesting sites. Mongooses, rats, cats, dogs and pigs can dig into turtle nests to eat hawksbill eggs and hatchlings.
      Volunteers who would like to help monitor and protect nests can contact the Hawksbill Turtle Recovery Project at Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park at 985-6090 or email HAVO_Turtle_Project@nps.gov. Report people harming sea turtles to 974-6208 and dead, sick or injured sea turtles to 327-7780.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

HAWAI`I ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION ALLIANCE and the state Department of Education are working to build capacity of non-DOE partners to better support environmental education, build community partnerships and strengthen relationships and opportunities. 
      The project is also connected to Hokule`a’s worldwide voyage and malama honua, “which is a nice way for us to link classrooms to local projects/groups who can help them develop a good service project that showcases how they will malama honua in their community,” said organizer Meredith Speicher. 
      The Hawai`i Environmental Education Alliance will be offering professional development in 2015 for their partners and organizations, starting with environmental education service providers that support three complex areas including Ka`u-Kea`au-Pahoa.
      Organizations and institutions that work in these areas can complete a survey aimed at assessing their needs, barriers to working with DOE and ways to build capacity.
      See the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/9J8PKNR.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

Protecting the nest with signage, fencing and a 24-seven watch.
Photo by Dave Berry
HAWAI`I ISLAND POLICE will conduct islandwide DUI checkpoints throughout the holiday season. The effort is part of a national and statewide campaign called “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.” The campaign starts today and runs through January 1. 
      Likely penalties for an arrest and conviction of operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant are $500 minimum bail for release from jail, $200 for installation of an interlock system plus $92.56 per month, loss of driver’s license, possible cancellation of insurance policy or a premium increase of up to $100 per month, alcohol assessment classes, community service, criminal probation, court fines and possible jail time.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar

SEN. BRIAN SCHATZ HAS CO-INTRODUCED the Promoting Regional Energy Partnerships for Advancing Resilient Energy Systems Act, legislation that would help states modernize U.S. energy systems to make them cleaner, more efficient, cost-effective, reliable and resilient. With an aging U.S. energy infrastructure in need of replacement and growing challenges to grid security, the PREPARE Act authorizes the U.S. Department of Energy to enter into regional cooperative agreements with states to provide support and funding that will help states develop strategies and plans that address the unique energy needs of the region.
Turtle tracks in the black sand as hatchlings march
to their ocean home. Photo by Dave Berry
      “In Hawai`i, we have seen great success in developing an energy strategy that has increased clean energy production and cut electricity bills, saving customers $1.5 billion since 2009. But we were only able to do this by working collaboratively with the Department of Energy and business and community leaders in the state,” Schatz said. “Our bill empowers the Energy Department to give states and regions the tools they need to modernize their energy infrastructure and build a cleaner, more resilient system.”

      The PREPARE Act is modeled off of Hawai`i’s Clean Energy Initiative, a federal-state-business-NGO partnership and builds upon the state’s energy program administered.
      To comment on or like this story, go to facebook.com/kaucalendar.

LIVE HOT GLASS DEMONSTRATIONS with Darren Goodman take place today and tomorrow at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. An exhibit of his works continues at the gallery through Saturday, Dec. 20 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free; park entrance fees apply.

KA`U CHAPTER OF HAWAI`I FARMERS UNION UNITED holds a holiday party and meeting today at 5:30 p.m. at Na`alehu Community Center. For more information, email malian@kauspecialtycoffee.com.

FRIENDS OF VOLCANO SCHOOL OF ARTS & SCIENCES present HAPA’s Barry Flanagan in an acoustic holiday performance today at 7 p.m. at Kilauea Military Camp Theater in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. $50 tickets are available at Lava Rock Store.

Kahuku Unit of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park offers a guided
hike tomorrow. Photo from NPS
A GUIDED HIKE AT KAHUKU UNIT of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park tomorrow from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. focuses on the area’s human history. This guided, 2.5-mile, moderately difficult hike over rugged terrain is free. 

NA MEA HULA WITH LOKE KAMANU and `Ohana takes place tomorrow from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free; park entrance fees apply.

KA`U CDP STEERING COMMITTEE MEETS tomorrow at 10 a.m. at Na`alehu Community Center. The committee continues its discussion of the first comprehensive draft. The public is invited.
      The document is available at kaucdp.info and at local libraries and community center.
      For more information, call Ron Whitmore at 961-8137.

Po`o Kumu Huihui Mossman and `Umeke Ka`eo Public Charter School
perform hula kahiko tomorrow. Photo from VAC
PO`O KUMU HUIHUI MOSSMAN with Ka `Umeke Ka`eo Public Charter School presents a hula kahiko performance tomorrow from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on the hula platform near Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Free; park entrance fees apply. 

GILLIGAN’S CAFÉ HOLDS ITS ONE-YEAR anniversary celebration tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. with entertainment throughout the day, food, local vendors and a silent auction. See bigislandgilligans.com.

NICK SHEMA GUIDES A SIX-MILE round-trip exploration of Puna Coast Trail from 9:45 a.m. to 3 p.m. Free for Friends of Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park; non-members can join in order to attend. Register at 985-7373 or admin@fhvnp.org.
Here Comes Santa Claus, to Pahala on Sunday. Photo by Julia Neal
PAHALA CHRISTMAS PARADE is on Sunday at 1 p.m. The parade travels through Pahala from the armory to the hospital and to Holy Rosary Church for refreshments. Everyone is welcome. Call 928-0808 to sign up. 

KA`U SCHOOL OF THE ARTS OFFERS a free Christmas Concert after Pahala Christmas Parade. The concert begins at 3 p.m. Sunday at Pahala Plantation House, featuring Ka`u `Ohana Band, Halau Hula O Ka `Imina Na`auao Kahiko and a sing-along with Ka`u Community Chorus. Potluck refreshments are welcome.


See kaucalendar.com/Directory2014.swf.

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