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Kayak to Huleia Valley on Kauai

Hule’ia Wildlife

The Hule’ia National Wildlife Refuge is one of nine National Wildlife Refuges in the state of Hawaii, one of three on the Island of Kauai. The Hule’ia Refuge is closed to the general public and is only accessible by kayaking with Island Adventures. Island Adventures guides perform volunteer service towards the natural resource restoration of Huleia National wildlife refuge for the privilege of sharing it with guests.

In 1973 the US Fish and Wildlife purchased 241 acres to set aside for the protection of Hawaii’s water birds. Within the past 200 yrs. Hawaii has lost more than 31% of its coastal wetlands. The wetlands that remain, the majority is degraded by altered hydrology, contaminants and invasive species.

The refuge is home to 31 species of birds, five of them are natives. Ae’o (Hawaiian Stilt), ‘Alae ke’o ke’o (Hawaiian Coot), ‘Alae Ula (Hawaiian Moorhen), Nene (Hawaiian Goose), Koloa Maoli (Hawaiian Duck)

Except for the Hawaiian coot, none of these species consistently number more than 2,000. Kaua’i has the largest population of Koloa in the State. The Hawaiian stilt in 1940 only numbered 200. Recent estimated population is about 1,500. In 1970 the ‘Alae Ula numbered as few as 30. The largest population is found in Hanalei and Wailua. In 2003 their count was just under 300. The current population is in the low 100’s and is now only found on O’ahu and Kaua’i.