Announcements: March 31, 2021

Webinars to cover potential use of fungicide in CLR battle

Two free webinars have been scheduled in April to help inform coffee growers on the potential use of a fungicide to combat the coffee leaf rust (CLR).

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Earlier this month, the state Department of Agriculture filed a request for emergency exemption with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to allow the use of a fungicide, Priaxor Xemium, on coffee plants in Hawaii. The fungicide is approved for use on other agricultural crops, but EPA approval is needed to allow its use specifically on coffee plants.

In anticipation that the EPA may approve the request by the end of April, the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (UH-CTAHR) and the Department of Agriculture will host two free Zoom webinars to help educate coffee growers on the safe use of the fungicide.

The first webinar is set for Thursday and the second for April 8. Both will be held from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.

Registration is required and may be completed at www.hawaiicoffeeed.com/priaxor.

For more information on the Zoom webinars, contact UH-CTAHR Associate Extension Agent Andrea Kawabata at andreak@hawaii.edu or call (808) 322-0164

CLR has been detected on Maui, Hawaii Island, Lanai and Oahu and is a serious threat to the state’s $56 million coffee industry. CLR is a devastating coffee pathogen and was first discovered in Sri Lanka in 1869 and can cause severe defoliation of coffee plants resulting in greatly reduced photosynthetic capacity. Estimated losses range from 30% to 80%.

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Humpback whale count wraps up

Sixty-eight trained site leaders gathered data from the shores of Oahu, Kauai and Hawaii islands during the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary Ocean Count and from Maui during the Great Whale Count by Pacific Whale Foundation, the last coordinated whale counts between the two organizations in 2021.

Site leaders collected data from 42 sites across all the main Hawaiian Islands on Saturday. A total of 118 whale sightings were seen from 9:30 to 9:45 a.m., the most of any time period throughout the day’s count.

On the islands of Hawaii, Oahu, and Kauai, Ocean Count site leaders collected data from 30 sites during 15-minute intervals between 8 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. A total of 83 whale sightings were seen from 9:30 to 9:45 a.m.

On Maui, Great Whale Count site leaders collected data from 12 sites during 15-minute intervals between 8:30 and 11:50 a.m. A total of 35 whale sightings were seen during the 9:30 to 9:45 a.m. time period.

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Preliminary data detailing Sanctuary Ocean Count whale sightings by site location are available at https://oceancount.org/resources.

 

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