THE SENATE

S.R. NO.

6

TWENTY-NINTH LEGISLATURE, 2017

S.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

SENATE RESOLUTION

 

 

URGING THE DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES TO CONDUCT AN EXTENSIVE STATEWIDE PUEO HABITAT INVENTORY.

 

 


WHEREAS, across the world, the owl serves as a symbol of wisdom and knowledge; and

 

WHEREAS, the pueo, or Hawaiian short-eared owl, is an endemic subspecies of the short-eared owl and is thought to have colonized the Hawaiian islands sometime after the arrival of Polynesians; and

 

WHEREAS, the pueo has a dark mask surrounding large, yellow eyes and, unlike most owls, is mostly active during the day and flies at high altitudes above open, grassy areas; and

 

WHEREAS, the pueo nests on the ground in grassy areas, laying three to six eggs over a few months, and young pueo depend on their parents for approximately two months; and

 

WHEREAS, the pueo is known as the "bird of wisdom" and has a special place in Hawaii's culture; and

 

WHEREAS, the pueo is known for offering guidance and protection and is revered by the ancient Hawaiians as an aumakua, or ancestral guardian, of many Hawaiian families; and

 

WHEREAS, throughout the State there are streets, areas, schools, and valleys that use and reference the pueo; and

 

WHEREAS, pueo were widespread at the end of the nineteenth century but are thought to be declining in numbers, especially on the Ewa plain; and

 

WHEREAS, young pueo nestlings are vulnerable to feral cats, dogs, rats, and mongoose, and the State has listed the species as endangered on Oahu; and

 

WHEREAS, SunEdison, LLC; Kaheawa Wind Power II; Kahuku Wind Power; Kahoolawe Island Reserve Commission; University of Hawaii; United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and United States Department of Agriculture have provided ongoing cooperation with the State in efforts to protect the pueo; and

 

WHEREAS, state- and privately-supported management activities designed to protect other endangered birds and preserve habitats can benefit the pueo, as there are more pueo on lands where game birds also are common; now, therefore,

 

BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Twenty-ninth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2017, that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is urged to conduct an extensive statewide pueo habitat inventory, with emphasis on Oahu, in collaboration with the University of Hawaii, nonprofit environmental organizations, and other stakeholders; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Department of Land and Natural Resources is requested to submit an interim report regarding the pueo habitat inventory, including an estimate of the time and resources necessary to complete a statewide pueo population estimate and statewide habitat inventory, to the Legislature no later than one month prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2018; and

 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Resolution be transmitted to the Governor, Chairperson of the Board of Land and Natural Resources, Chairperson of the Hawaiian Homes Commission, Chief Executive Officer of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, President of the University of Hawaii System, mayors of the several counties, and Commander of Navy Region Hawaii.

 

 

 

Report Title:

Department of Land and Natural Resources; Pueo Habitat; University of Hawaii