About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Ka`u News Briefs June 23, 2012

Ka`u Coffee farmer Godofredo Miranda surveys trees with burnt leaves and green beans as Ka`u Coffee Growers
Cooperative president Gloria Camba assesses damage. Photo by William Neal
WAS THE PAHALA FIRE started by someone last Monday? This is a major question by fire investigators, landowners, farmers and ranchers, as trees still smolder, the fire still travels makai of the village and residents hope that winds stay calm and avoid another flare-up. Some residents talked about putting together funding for Crimestoppers to give a reward for turning in evidence. Others talk about keeping gulches clean near agriculture and residential areas.
Gloria Camba examines healthy green coffee beans among
singed leaves. Photo by William Neal
      Coffee farmers are looking for help to repair their farms, and ML Macadamia, LLC is looking at heavy losses with as much as total loss on some 150 acres of trees makai of Hwy 11, plus huge costs in rebuilding irrigation systems after pipes and tubing melted in the flames.
      Gloria Camba, Ka`u Coffee farmer and president of Ka`u Coffee Growers Cooperative, traveled to the farm of Godofredo Miranda yesterday and saw green coffee beans in the midst of brown and blackened, singed leaves. She said she was told that as long as the branches of the trees are more yellow than brown, “they should make it.” Farmers were offered help from Rep. Bob Herkes, the county and Ka`u Coffee Mill founder Edmund C. Olson.
Norfolk pine windbreaks for coffee farms were singed by
the fire. Photo by William Neal
      Conservationists are planning to visit the coastal area makai of the fires early next week to assess possible damage to the Kamehame Preserve.
      Hawai`i County Fire Department reports that the mauka fire is 95 percent contained and under control, while the makai fires are 60 percent contained. Pahala Fire Captain Shawn Hayashida told Hawai`i Tribune-Herald that it was expected to burn itself out. He said it would be unlikely that the fire would be more than 60 percent contained because of the difficulty in reaching some areas to create a fire break.

Trees still smoldered Friday at Pear Tree.
Photo by William Neal
DANIEL ORODENKER has been named executive officer of the state’s Land Use Commission, which is responsible for preserving and protecting Hawai`i’s lands and encouraging those uses to which lands are best suited. Orodenker represents the state’s interests and concerns in decisions about land use. He has a law background, has held a variety of government positions and has experience in nonprofits and environmental organizations, including The Nature Conservancy. Orodenker said his first focus will be “to improve communications on all issues, and to ensure that all viewpoints are fairly represented to the Commission.”

Ua Alencastre-Galimba with her Grand Champion 4-H steer.
UA ALENCASTRE-GALIMBA, OF KUAHIWI RANCH, won top honors with her Grand Champion 4-H steer at last Saturday’s Hawai`i County Livestock Show at Mealani Research Station in Waimea. About a dozen 4-H members from Ka`u participated, including Kaile Aickin, McKella Akana, Grant Galimba, Gavin Galimba, Brandi Hashimoto, Donald Mello-Waiwai`ole, Kaleo Mello-Waiwai`ole, Keani Mello-Waiwai`ole, Leah Mello-Waiwai`ole and Shavon Mello-Waiwai`ole. Club Leader is Guy Galimba.
      4-H strives to help young people “make the best better” through programs that emphasize learning by doing. Approximately 35,000 young people participate in its varied programs annually throughout the state of Hawai`i. To learn more, visit ctahr.hawaii.edu/4H.

A FEMALE NENE GOOSE died Tuesday evening after being struck by a vehicle on Chain of Craters Road near Pauahi Crater in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Her mate of 13 years escaped unharmed, but remains in the area. The female, known as Green DU, was hatched in captivity in the park in December 1991 and released in March 1992. She was a consistent breeder who successfully raised 24 goslings. Green DU was what wildlife biologists call a rare “double-clutch” breeder who once reared two goslings to fledglings and then re-nested and raised an additional four goslings in a single breeding season.
Motorists are cautioned to watch out for nene. A male lost his mate when
she was hit by a car Tuesday. Photo from Jessica Ferracane/NPS
      “It is a shame that a nene with such a long and productive life had to die so tragically,” said Dr. Rhonda Loh, the park’s chief of resource management.
      Nene are quite active in the late evening and early morning, and their grayish coloring makes them difficult to see during those hours. Park officials urge motorists to slow down and watch out for the endemic and federally endangered nene while driving and also caution visitors not to feed geese because birds seeking handouts fall prey to oncoming vehicles.

BIG ISLAND BEEKEEPERS ASSOCIATION invites raw honey producers to participate in the third annual Hawaiian Natural Honey Challenge to be held in November. The Challenge showcases the quality of unprocessed, unfiltered honey produced by local beekeepers statewide and consists of a formal judging and a public tasting. Top scorers by category in the formal judging receive awards, and in the public tasting people vote for their favorite, which wins the People’s Choice award. The complete Challenge invitation is posted at http://bibahawaiibees.org. For more information, contact Pattie Rechtman at 990-4943 or pattier@aol.com.

MARLENE HAPAI, candidate for state House District 3, visits Pahala tomorrow at Holy Rosary Catholic Church from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. The public is invited to hear her speak and share their concerns for the area. Refreshments will be served.