Little pest, big problem
The invasive coqui frog creates a loud, disturbing noise.
Australian Tree Fern
Invasive weed takes over Kaua'i mountain cliff.
Hawaii's role as a major commercial hub of the Pacific makes the islands especially vulnerable to invasion by invasive pests.
Kappaphycus algae, an invasive species that smothers coral reefs, and Miconia calvescens, the “green cancer” of Pacific island rainforests, are already in Hawai‘i, as are Rapid ‘Ōhi‘a Death, Australian tree ferns, little fire ants, coffee berry borers and Caribbean tree frogs. Several other dangerous aliens are at our doorstep. The brown tree snake, biting sand flies and West Nile virus are just a plane ride or cargo shipment away.
Strategies for Success
Protecting Hawai‘i from these pests requires a collaborative, multi-tiered defense. The top tier is enhanced prevention, or stopping alien pests before they get here. The second tier is early detection and response, or acting quickly to limit a pest’s spread when it does slip through our borders. And the third tier is containment and control of already established pests.
The Conservancy is working to bolster these lines of defense. Our efforts are focused on three key areas:
- Developing new, innovative technologies to detect and prevent the spread of harmful alien pests.
- Advocating for stronger public policy and adequate funding to implement a statewide invasive species prevention and control strategy.
- Building collaborative partnerships with government and communities that strengthen protections in Hawai‘i and across the Pacific.