how healthy is your watershed?

watershed health

My friend Mike Kido, of the Hawaii Stream Research Center at UH Manoa, has always been ahead of the pack.

He helped launch the first watershed council in Hawaii-- at Hanalei-- and now has the first comprehensive assessment of stream habitat quality and stream biotic diversity (via PacificNeon).

His research and field data collection on conditions in Hawaiian streams has contributed mightily to our understanding of factors affecting native marine life.

Now, these data have been correlated with data on land cover to produce a Watershed Health Index.

Among his major findings: the percent of "Alien Forest" in each watershed exhibited a distinct negative relationship with both habitat quality and biotic integrity.

Mike's "Watershed Health Calculator" shows the detailed assessment data for each of 510 watersheds in Hawaii.

Out of a possible "watershed health" assessment score of 100, barely 1 in 5 watersheds rated at least an 80 (or "B" grade), including 31 (of 170) on the Big Island, 21 (of 100) on Maui, 15 (of 63) on O`ahu, and 11 (of 65) on Kaua`i.

Published by Ken on October 8th, 2006 tagged HI-specific, Island Ecosystems

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