James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge
This refuge near the northernmost point of Oahu was established in 1976 with the goal of providing habitat for Hawaiian waterbirds and migratory waterbirds as well as native plants that require a wetland habitat. Kahuku Point marks the end of the north shore and the beginning of Oahu’s windward coast. Just south of the point is the historic sugarcane town of Kahuku. The shopping center in Kahuku was created by converting an old sugar mill and using the old sugar machinery in the decor of the shopping center.
Formerly just 164 acres in size, the James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge was expanded in 2005 to encompass 1,100 acres making it Oahu’s largest refuge and a favorite gathering place for Oahu bird watchers. The refuge includes spring-fed marshes and mudflats that are home to at least 117 species of birds including the endangered Hawaiian stilt (aeo), coot (alae keokeo), moorhen (alae ula), and Hawaiian duck (koloa). The refuge also has Oahu’s last remaining intact coastal dune system. Some of the migratory birds seen at the refuge include Northern pintails, Northern shovelers, Pacific golden plovers, and ruddy turnstones. Many of the migratory birds come from Alaska, Siberia, and Asia.
Guided tours of the Refuge are available by reservation only during the non-breeding season from the third Saturday in October through the third Saturday in February on Thursday afternoons and Saturday mornings of the first two Saturdays of the month, and then in the afternoon on the last two Saturdays of the month. The remainder of the year is a stilt breeding and nesting time so no access is available in order to provide the birds with an undisturbed habitat. For reservations contact the refuge at (808) 637-6330.
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