Hawai'i State News

May is Hawaiʻi Invasive Species Awareness Month

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An annual month-long campaign is underway to prevent and minimize the impacts of invasive species in Hawaiʻi and highlight the positive steps being taken to protect the islands.

Image courtesy of the Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources

May is Hawaiʻi Invasive Species Awareness Month. This year’s theme is “Who Protects Hawaiʻi? We All Do,” underscoring the collaborative approach necessary to address and effectively manage the risks invasive species pose.

“Hawaiʻi’s agriculture and environment are in a constant battle with many invasive pests and diseases,” said Hawaiʻi Department of Agriculture Chairwoman Sharon Hurd. “We need everyone’s awareness and kōkua to help defend against these threats to our islands.”

Several events and activities are planned throughout the state, focusing on raising awareness with information and discussions about topics including effective biosecurity measures, pests such as little fire ants and the coconut rhinoceros beetle, as well as community and youth engagement.


“Biosecurity is a kākou thing,” said Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairwoman Dawn Chang. “This year’s theme highlights that everyone has kuleana for protecting Hawaiʻi against invasive species, including community members and staff from all of our partner agencies.”

People participate in an event to remove invasive species. (Image courtesy of the Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources)

There also will be volunteer opportunities for those who want to get involved in the fight against what the Hawaiʻi Legislature described as “the single greatest threat to Hawaiʻi’s economy, natural environment and the health and lifestyle of Hawaiʻi’s people and visitors.”

Participants can survey for invasive plants on Oʻahu’s North Shore, remove weeds from remote forests on Maui, restore critical bird habitat on the Big Island and more.


A series of free webinars offered by local experts and awards celebrating community efforts on the frontlines of the battle against invasive species are scheduled as well.

For more information about events and activities during Hawaiʻi Invasive Species Awareness Month, click here.

The awareness and prevention campaign is led by the Hawaiʻi Invasive Species Council, an inter-departmental collaboration co-chaired by the state Agriculture and Land departments. Partners include the Hawaiʻi Department of Health; University of Hawaiʻi; Hawaiʻi Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism; and the Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation.

People take in a biosecurity exhibit at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu. (Image courtesy of the Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources)

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