NFWF Announces $445,000 in New Grants to Bolster Conservation Efforts in Hawai'i

Projects will engage local citizens in restoration activities and support native bird conservation

Hawaiian island

HONOLULU, HAWAI'I (March 30, 2023) – The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) today announced $445,000 in grants to promote forest bird conservation and community participation in Hawai'i. The three grants will generate $569,000 in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $1,014,000.

The grants were awarded through the Hawai'i Conservation Program, a partnership between NFWF, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS).

“Native Hawaiian forest birds do not migrate to any other place in the world,” said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. “These unique species are some of the most endangered birds on the planet and unfortunately they face numerous threats to their long-term survival. The grants announced today will fund conservation measures that will make a real difference for these amazing birds.”

Grants will focus on protecting forest birds such as puaiohi (small Kaua'i thrush), O'ahu elepaio (monarch flycatcher), kiwikiu (Maui parrotbill), and palila (finch-billed Hawaiian honeycreeper) from predators like invasive rats, mongoose, and cats on Kaua'i, O'ahu, Maui, and Hawai'i Island. The grants will also continue planning, coordination and community engagement on the development of a landscape-scale tool to control mosquitoes that are known to transmit avian malaria to native forest birds.

“Our partnerships are vital to preventing extinction of imperiled species and engaging communities in recovery efforts,” said Michelle Bogardus, Assistant Field Supervisor, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “The investment of these funds honor and advance the legacy of conservation imbued in the Endangered Species Act, as we celebrate its 50th anniversary.”

As in years past, these grants will support the establishment of thousands of native plants by community volunteers to restore critical palila habitat on the upper slopes of Mauna Kea on Hawai'i Island. 

“The U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region is honored to work with partners such as the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,” said Jennifer Eberlien, Regional Forester for U.S. Forest Service Region 5. “Funding from the Hawai'i Conservation Program supports both native bird populations and the resilient native forests that are their home.”

Established in 2021, NFWF’s business plan for the Hawai'i Conservation Program outlines the goals and strategies to restore, improve and protect habitat and wildlife throughout the main Hawaiian Islands, from mauka to makai (from the mountains to the ocean), to reduce extinction risk and sustain resilient populations of native species. Under the new business plan, the Hawai'i Conservation Program has supported 30 projects totaling $6.9 million in grants that have leveraged more than $7.4 million in grantee matching contributions for a total on-the-ground conservation impact of more than $14.3 million.

A complete list of the 2023 grants made through this program is available here.    

About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
Chartered by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores the nation’s fish, wildlife, plants and habitats. Working with federal, corporate and individual partners, NFWF has funded more than 6,000 organizations and generated a conservation impact of $8.1 billion. Learn more at

About the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit

About the U.S. Forest Service
Established in 1905, the Forest Service’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains one of the largest forestry research organizations in the world. Public lands managed by the Forest Service provide 20 percent of the nation’s clean water supply and contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. The agency also supports sustainable management on about 500 million acres of private, state and tribal forests including forests in urban areas. For more information, visit



Rob Blumenthal, 202-857-0166,