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DLNR News Release-Kaua’i Mayor Proclaims 2024 “Year of the Forest Birds”, Feb. 1, 2024













Feb. 2, 2024


(LĪHUʻE, KAUA‘I) – Kaua‘i Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami, on Thursday, presented a mayoral proclamation to the Kaua‘i Forest Bird Recovery Project (KFBRP) and partners, to mark 2024 Makahiki O Nā Manu Nahele, Year of the Forest Birds. This follows a proclamation from Gov. Josh Green, M.D., on January 12.

Prior to presenting the proclamation to KFBRP representatives Mayor Kawakami said, “I’d rather speak from the heart. We talk about rekindling our relationship with birds, but it’s more so, rekindling mankind’s relationship with Mother Earth. Over time, technology and just the hustle and bustle of life often finds us disconnected from what sustains us.”

Julie Diegmann, a KFBRP Planner, was thrilled with the mayor’s recognition for her program, along with all the government organizations and non-profits that are working desperately to save honeycreepers before it’s too late.


“We see the birds dying and we don’t know that anybody cares. So, to me, seeing that many people in the highest levels of leadership do care, it makes my heart happy,” Diegmann said.


Dr. Cali Crampton, who leads KFBRP, added, “Once upon a time the skies of Kaua‘i were filled with the songs of native bird species from mauka to makai. Regrettably today, we find ourselves with only eight native bird species on Kauai, one which is threatened and three that are critically endangered.


The proclamation ceremony included a performance by Kaʻimi Naʻauao o Hawaiʻi Nei Institute which performed an original song celebrating native forest birds.


The partners in the statewide Birds, Not Mosquito collaboration are currently doing mosquito control work in bird habitats. Mosquitos carry avian malaria which is the primary cause of death for forest birds.


During this Year of the Forest Bird, the collective of government agencies, nonprofit and non-government organizations are banding together to bring significant attention to the plight of native forest birds.


Among the awareness-raising events and activities planned:

  • Detailed species profiles for Hawaiian forest birds, including photos of extinct birds from collections at Bishop Museum.
  • Forest bird audio mixes for Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Maui, and Hawaiʻi Island, allowing users to imagine how restored, bird-filled forests would sound.
  • Curricula and lesson plans on Hawaiian honeycreepers and other forest birds; locally produced mini-documentaries featuring hula, birdsong, and behind-the-scenes footage of bird conservation efforts.
  • Activities, crafts, games, coloring books, and stickers for Hawaiʻi classrooms.
  • Opportunities to donate or purchase items that support bird conservation, and
  • A year-long calendar of events including volunteer opportunities, festivals, workshops, contests, and performances.

Diegmann joked, “We welcome any other mayors or leaders who would like to issue their own proclamations. The more we can do, the higher our hopes for saving these precious birds.”

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(All images/video courtesy: DLNR) 


HD video – Year of the Forest Birds Kaua‘i proclamation (Feb. 1, 2024):

(Shot sheet attached)

Photographs – Year of the Forest Birds Kaua‘i proclamation (Feb. 1, 2024):



Media Contact: 

Dan Dennison 

Communications Director 

(808) 587-0396 

[email protected]