Thursday, March 15, 2007

Maui man, 74, saves seabird colony

For most of his 74 years, Isao Nakagawa considered Hawea Point in Kapalua as simply a good place to catch bait fish, not as nesting habitat for wedge-tailed shearwaters.
Then, about seven years ago, he discovered the aftermath of a massacre at the dwindling seabird colony.
"One day I found 22 dead birds. That really got me. I couldn't stand it," said Nakagawa, a retired shop supervisor for Maui Land & Pineapple Co.'s Honolua plantation.
The marauders were cats or dogs, and Nakagawa was moved to launched a one-man campaign to remove predators from the area and protect the shearwaters, which spend most of their lives on the open ocean, coming ashore in late March and April to nest in burrows in the sandy soil and rocky crevices, and between the roots of ironwood trees.

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