Voices of Science

Voices of Science is a series of audio stories that focus on the science and conservation practices within the National Park Service. It is a chance for listeners to learn more about nature through sounds and stories of people working in and taking care your parks. Put on your headphones, sit back, and enjoy.

Bleached white corals

Coral Bleaching in the Pacific

Coral bleaching is a global crisis. Warmer water temperatures cause corals to react by expelling their algae, leaving stark white corals in their wake. If corals stay bleached for too long, the whole reef could die. Reefs are home to a wide variety of sea life, to lose this biodiversity would be devastating. Reef biologists in Kaloko-Honokohau say there’s still time to help control the warming that’s underway.

Waves crashing against a massive black sea wall

Fishponds at Kaloko-Honokōhau

Native Hawaiians were some of the first fish-farmers in history. 800 years ago, they built large fishponds where they’d raise fish for the whole community. And nature provided, too. Naturally-formed fishponds dotted the coast of the Big Island of Hawaiʻi. Today, Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park works hard to maintain these symbols of the past, to preserve them for our future.

A pair of black and white stripped birds

The Rarest Goose in the World

The Hawaiian Goose, or nēnē, is the rarest goose in the world. It’s found only in the state of Hawaiʻi. In the 1950’s, the species was on the brink of extinction. With the help of biologists like Kathleen Misajon in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, the nēnē population is rebounding.

A small red frog sitting on a reddish green leaf

The Coquistador

A noisy little amphibian is causing quite the ruckus on Hawai'i Island - the invasive coqui frog. Coqui threaten the native ecosystems and shatter the natural soundscapes in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. Biological Resource Technician Kim Dilman works by night, removing frogs from the landscape to protect sensitive areas and preserve the native, natural resources in the park.

A star filled sky above a person in shadow

Night Skies in Hawai'i Volcanoes

For generations, night skies have inspired those who choose to look up. They helped the original Polynesian wayfinders find their way across the sea. They inspire the visitors in national parks. They're also important to sensitive species in the wild. In Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park, you can appreciate the stars like nowhere else on the planet. And the park is working hard to keep it that way.

Gray and red lava on top of black hardened lava

Lava and Change

Some of the biggest changes on Hawai’i come from the active volcano on the island. Lava flowing across the island incinerates everything in its path. But lava also creates new land. Land that will eventually support species and habitats found nowhere else on earth.

Last updated: October 4, 2019