Natural Resource Condition Assessments for Haleakalā National Park

The Natural Resource Condition Assessment (NRCA) Program provides framework, funding, and publishing support to parks to aid in the synthesis and documentation of natural resource conditions. Condition assessment reports are a tool to describe selected park resources, and record a snapshot of their current condition, identify trends, and identify potential or current threats and stressors. Understanding the condition and trend of natural resources is key for parks and NPS planners to appropriately prioritize and allocate stewardship resources.

A family of endangered nēnē (Hawaiian geese) and pūkiawe shrubs with Haleakalā crater in background.
A family of endangered nēnē (Hawaiian geese) and pūkiawe shrubs with Haleakalā Crater in background.


Haleakalā National Park is a 33,719 acre (13,645 ha) natural area on the island of Maui, Hawaiʻi. The park includes lands from sea level to the summit of Haleakalā Volcano at 10,023 ft (3,056 m) elevation, and protects a remarkable diversity of biomes and ecosystem types. These include, but are not limited to: coastal strand and scrub; dry, mesic and wet lowland forests; montane mesic or wet forests and bogs; subalpine grasslands and mesic or dry shrublands, which grade into alpine desert; and freshwater ecosystems. The major effort of Haleakalā National Park resource stewardship is to preserve intact this superb example of the Hawaiian Islands' native ecosystems.

Traditional NRCA Report: 2019

The Natural Resource Condition Assessment for the park was published in 2019. National Park Service staff created a comprehensive list of indicators to be evaluated under three main resource topics:

- Life-supporting environment

- Biological integrity

- Landscape condition context

Current conditions for each of these resources, and for constituent indicators that were considered to be most relevant in characterizing the resources, were evaluated according to all available information. Overall, six of the 16 focal resource indicators were judged to be in good condition, seven were judged to warrant moderate concern, and three were judged to warrant significant concern.

Collectively, this assessment suggests that natural resources at Haleakalā National Park are under considerable strain. Most resource management efforts are currently targeted at the remaining focal resources related to biological integrity (Invasive species and focal species or communities), to prevent those warranting moderate concern to degrade further, and to protect those still in good condition from incipient threats. Haleakalā National Park remains one of the most valuable natural areas in Hawaiʻi, protecting a wide diversity of ecosystems and a large number of threatened and endangered species, and updated information for continued management of its natural resources will be critical. This circumstance is in large part owed to its inclusion within the NPS, and the concerted management efforts that were subsequently undertaken. Major past achievements, such as the fencing and exclusion of feral ungulates from the majority of the park, provide hope that current and future threats may yet be mitigated with sufficient determination, creativity, and collaborative effort.

For other reports and natural resource datasets visit the NPS Data Store.

Source: Data Store Collection 7765 (results presented are a subset). To search for additional information, visit the Data Store.

Last updated: December 16, 2022


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