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  • AcroporaCytherea1

    Acropora cytherea

    One of the major corals responsible for building the immense calcium carbonate substructure that supports the thin living skin of a reef.

  • Acanthurus Triostegus and coral

    Coral Gardens

    Convict Tangs Amidst a Garden of Coral Heaven

  • Acropora Nasuta

    Acropora nasuta

    Tightly packed branches and nariform (nose-shaped)corallites resemble floral clusters.

Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument

The World's Largest Marine Protected Area

Damselfish and Anemone thumbnail

Johnston Atoll National Wildlife Refuge and six other national wildlife refuges are seemingly just dots near the equator of the Pacific Ocean, but upon a closer look these islands, reefs, and atolls are at the heart of the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument, the largest marine conservation area in the world. These refuges host terrestrial and marine life in vast numbers and specialized life forms stretching our imagination. They provide a safe haven for millions of birds and marine life that swarm to shallow reefs and islands to rest, feed, mate, and give life to their off-spring.

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About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America’s fish, wildlife, and plants.

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Giving Native Wildlife a Fighting Chance

  • Fish and Wildlife Service Strike Team Attacks Ants!


    It is very promising that red-tailed tropic birds nesting on Johnston Atoll National Wildlife Refuge will soon be spared the pain inflicted by Yellow Crazy Ants. Check out the Audubon article and video. Photo: Strike Team member Kevin Donmoyer after banding red-tailed tropic bird.

    Audubon Article
  • Recovering an Island Ecosystem: One Strike Team at a Time

    C.A.S.T. Crew Cover Medium Size

    VOLUNTEER POSITIONS ARE CURRENTLY BEING FILLED FOR THE 2016 C.A.S.T. CREW SEASON! VISIT "GET INVOLVED" FOR MORE INFORMATION. Tenacious, driven, and fun personalities thrown in with some glue and grit, characterize the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Crazy Ant Strike Team (CAST) crews since 2010. The 12th Crazy Ant Strike Team biological crew of four volunteer technicians and one crew leader will live for six months on uninhabited Johnston Atoll. They are scheduled to depart Honolulu for their 4-day voyage across the ocean on-board the transport vessel Kahana, in June 2016. Previously, millions of Yellow Crazy Ants had completely displaced ground nesting bird populations and were impacting the largest nesting red-tailed tropic bird colony in the world. Building upon the eradication efforts of CAST crews before them this crew carries forward a goal of complete eradication of Yellow Crazy Ants that have been reduced, over a five year back-to-back strike team effort, by over 90%. Photo: CAST Crew 2013-2014

    C.A.S.T. Crew Yearbook 2010-2015
  • CAST Crew 9 Discovers Magic Potion

    CAST CREW XI 160x95

    Check it OUT! Find out how this volunteer crew figured out they needed literally 5 tons of sugar to be transported by ship to Johnston Atoll on 6.17.2015.

    Personal Blog Post 6.14.2015
  • Tsunami Debris Finds Its Way Back Home to Japan

    Jet Ski Returned

    While Fish and Wildlife Service Volunteer was completing a bird survey on May 21, 2013, an intact Jet ski was sighted washed ashore from the 2011 Japan Tsunami. The Fish and Wildlife Service coordinated the return to its rightful owner, Mr. Matsunaga (right in photo). It is being repaired by the YAMAHA factory at Shizuoka. Photo by: Shigeru Fujieda

    Complete Story and Photos!
Page Photo Credits — DL Hayes/USFWS, James Maragos
Last Updated: Jan 19, 2016
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