The Paiko Reef Flat Restoration Project of Maunalua Bay was started by Malama Maunalua, a non-government organization. The aim of the project was to remove the invasive mudweed from the reef flat of Maunalua Bay.
A video by Malama Maunalua outlining the target area and ‘The Great Huki’
In 1987 an invasive mudweed species, Avrainvellia amadelpha, was introduced to Maunalua Bay, Hawai’i. It was first observed in the Paiko Reef area after a large storm passed through which deposited a layer of terrestrial sediment on the reef flat. As the particular specie is effective at trapping and holding sediment, it quickly flourished within the bay.
The mudweed then quickly reproduced and spread down the large coastline of the bay, thus taking over a majority of the natural habitat. At its peak, the mudweed’s distribution spanned the entire bay and covered up to 90% of the Paiko Reef flat. Fish that previously were abundant within the region were now observed scarce to none.
Malama Maunalua 2012 Action Plan has set three distinct goals they wish to achieve:
- To reduce the amount of invasive mudweed on the Paiko Reef flat to 10% of total benthic cover
- To reduce sediment runoff & improve sediment flushing rates from the Paiko Reef flat
- To return native fish populations to 50% of previous levels
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