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American Samoa

Pago Pago

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Conservation benefit: Eradication of dense stands of destructive invasive trees adjacent to the National Park of American Samoa

Date Approved: 06.2008

Forest

This project protects forest, preventing the release of greenhouse gases and reducing erosion that damages coastal and ocean ecosystems.

A major eradication effort is underway to eliminate a highly invasive tree species, Falcataria moluccana, from American Samoa. The trees have invaded about 35 percent of the forested land of Tutuila, the main island of American Samoa. The National Park Service has led efforts to fight back. Its ongoing efforts have killed every large seed tree across more than 1,000 acres of the infested areas.

With support from Seacology, more than 1,700 large Falcataria seed trees have already been killed, and over 500 acres of native rainforest have been reclaimed in Fagasa Village and the national park. This project will take out another 1,000 trees, reclaiming an additional 120 acres of forest.

Project Updates

December 2009

As of December 2009 project contact and NPSA staff Tavita Togia reports that the Pago Pago village crew has removed more than 1,700 mature tamaligi trees saving about 150 acres of native Samoan forest. Tavita conducted two radio interviews to inform the public about this project, one on a local radio station and one with radio New Zealand International. Because of the success of this project and the other two previous Seacology funded tamaligi control projects in 2006 and 2007, both the US Fish and Wildlife and the American Samoa’s Governor Coral Reef Task Force are providing additional financial support to initiate increased tamaligi control in the area.

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January 2009

The project began in September 2008. Seacology received photos of workers girdling trees in November 2008. The project is anticipated to be complete by early 2009.

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