State fences off Kauai forest reserve from feral animals

Better protection is coming to Kauai’s rare and native forest habitat.

Work began Thursday to build a 3.3-mile fence in the Hono O Na Pali Natural Area Reserve. The fence, which will stretch from Pihea to Kilohana, is meant to keep feral goats and pigs out of 2,290 acres of high-elevation forests and stop them from spreading invasive weeds, trampling vegetation and, in the case of feral pigs, preying upon rare seabird nests.

“Several of the species there are found not only nowhere else on earth, but nowhere else in the state,” said Lisa Hadway, Division of Forestry and Wildlife administrator.

Public access to the area will not be affected by the fence. Gates and step-overs will be installed at trails and access points along fences to facilitate access for hikers, hunters, gatherers, and any others who use the area.

The reserve stretches from sea level along the Na Pali coast up to the Alakai plateau in the Hanalei and Waimea districts, and protects native forest watersheds, as well as 48 species of endangered plants and six endangered bird species.

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