Hawaii Marine Animal Response (HMAR) is an extremely active team that is engaged in protected marine species preservation and recovery efforts every day of the year. For example, during 2017 our hotline recorded nearly 2,900 sightings of protected marine species which involved field response and support activity more than 2,500 times. Each field response is important to help species population research, to identify potential animal health concerns, to create a trail of important photo documentation and to build and reinforce public stewardship of our endangered, threatened and protected marine species. In addition, nearly 400 proactive surveys for animals, on often-times remote shorelines, offshore islets and near-shore waters covering more than 1,600 locations, were conducted by team members to provide critical data for research. During 2017 alone, our team was engaged in, or performed, over 70 escalated actions, stranding responses or animal interventions. Our activity helps save animals from injury or death caused by fishery interactions, disease and potentially harmful human and pet interactions. On average during 2017, members of our volunteer and staff team were active performing field response to sightings, surveys, interventions, escalated support, outreach, education or dispatch tasks about 11 times per day (over 4,000 times during the year). On any given 12-hour work day, our collective volunteer and staff activity was nearly 47 hours.
Not only does our work have a critical and positive impact on species preservation and recovery but it also results in our ability to reach tens of thousands of people – more than 65,000 people during 2017 – with outreach and education so that people are better informed and more committed to doing their part in protected species stewardship. During the past year the dedicated activity of our volunteers contributed a workforce value of $345,000 – better than a 3 to 1 return on investment from the government funding we receive.
The preservation, recovery and stewardship of Hawaii’s protected marine species is not work that has a start and end. It must continue indefinitely so that future generations can enjoy, respect and support these unique and important marine animals – some of the incredible natural resources that make Hawaii so special. With your support, we can not only continue, but can expand the important work we do now and into the future.
2017 Activity Highlights
- Recording nearly 2,900 sightings of protected marine species such as Hawaiian monk seals as well as sea turtles requiring intervention to capture important data concerning potential animal health issues, identification, location and behaviors. These sightings involved over 2,500 field response activities of HMAR volunteers and staff.
- Conducted nearly 400 surveys at over 1,600 locations to collect important observations used in endangered species population research.
- Team members engaged in shoreline responses, surveys, interventions, escalated support, outreach, education and other activity over 4,000 times (about 11 times per day).
- Performed Hawaiian monk seal and sea turtle related escalated actions, interventions or emergency responses over 70 times.
- Members of the public engaged by team members over 65,000 times.
- Volunteer and staff hours logged over 16,500 of work activity (nearly 47 hours every day).