The water resources, upon which our human species is entirely dependent, are under siege. By 2025, The World Health Organization predicts that half of the world’s population will be living in areas considered ʻwater-stressed’. Oncoming climate change will further reduce harvested rainwater amounts.
The native forests of Hawai`i are not only the last refuge for native plants and animals, but the source of our water - an especially critical resource on isolated, highly populated islands.
Before humans arrived on Maui 1,000-1,400 years ago, dense native forests covered much of the island and in many areas literally fell into the sea. The loss of native forests has been most catastrophic on leeward slopes, where the combined influences of fire, introduced grazing and browsing animals, and invasive weeds, have reduced formerly expansive forest landscapes to 2.5% of their former extent.
What is clear is that we are at a critical time in Maui and Hawai’i's history. Watershed partnerships statewide struggle with largely inadequate resources to hold the line on the loss of our native upland forests. With a relatively limited toolbox of conservation techniques, land managers are dealing with increasingly complicated problems that require new and creative solutions.
A call to action to protect our watershed forests is needed. Whether it is this, or a future generation, the prosperity of Hawai`i depends on our native forests.
Saturday, April 7th, we will continue our efforts to restore Maui’s dryland forests.
On our volunteer trips to Auwahi forest, we work as a team to plant native seedlings, pull weeds, and gather seeds. This particular trip though is going to be a little bit more physically challenging with more up and downs, uneven terrain, more bush crashing.
To volunteer with our program requires that you are in reasonably good physical condition with no major medical issues (heart conditions, asthma, bee allergies, diabetes, pregnancy, physical injuries, etc..). If this is your first time volunteering, for your safety and the safety of others, please let us know that you meet these requirements.
Due to limited seating, please understand that confirmation of your reservation is required for you to attend. To request a seat, send us a note to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will respond to your request by Monday, April 2, 2018.
Where: Meet at ʻUlupalakua Ranch Store. Please park behind store and bring all your gear.
When: Saturday, April 7, 2018 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
What to bring: Due to the rough and steep terrain, we require hiking boots that cover the ankle, and unfortunately, we will have to turn folks away without proper boots. We have some extra boots you can borrow but please bring your own socks. Long pants are also recommended to protect against the dense understory brush. Please bring a back pack with layered clothing rain gear, two liters of water, lunch, sunscreen and a hat. Please clean all your gear, backpacks and boots to leave hitchhiking seeds behind.
Located on and sponsored by `Ulupalakua Ranch, the Auwahi Project (www.auwahi.org) protects one of the last diverse tracts of dryland forest in the archipelago. We are a community based project, in large part, dependent on the contributions of the public, especially in terms of volunteerism for tree planting and other aspects of forest management.
As usual, before leaving the ranch we will be decontaminating our boots with brushes to help prevent the spread of invasive plants and using alcohol to avoid the potential spread of rapid `ōhi`a death (ROD) and other potential pathogens that can threaten our native Hawaiian forests.
Auwahi Forest Restoration `ohana