Set aside 100 years ago by President Teddy Roosevelt and now part of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, the reefs and islets of the Northwestern Hawaiian chain from Nihoa Island through Pearl and Hermes Atoll are home to a remarkable diversity of plant and animal life found nowhere else in the world. Once the site of large-scale slaughter of seabirds for the millinery trade, these islands now provide a glimpse of what may have been found in the coastal ecosystems of the main Hawaiian Islands before their development.
About 1,729 acres of emergent land surrounded by more than 638,360 acres of coral reefs are protected as the
Hawai‘i House of Representatives Honors Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge Centennial
On April 3, 2009, the Hawai‘i House of Representatives presented a resolution to the Papahānaumokuākea Monument Management Board honoring the 100th anniversary of the Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge. The resolution recognizes the refuge as Hawai‘i’s oldest national wildlife refuge protecting and preserving the fragile ocean ecosystems of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Through its resolution, the House of Representatives "proclaims its strong support for the continuation of the Hawaiian Islands National Wildlife Refuge, congratulates them on the momentous occasion of its 100th anniversary, and thanks the many conservation workers who provide stewardship for this precious resource for the people of Hawai‘i and future generations."