What We Do

Who manages the Monument?

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) jointly manage the monument. The Final Management Plan and Environmental Assessment is now available on the Monument's Project Page

Our Projects and Research

Since the early 1900s, researchers have recognized the uniqueness of the waters and submerged lands within the monument boundaries. This recognition has piqued the interests of oceanographers, who are a special type of scientist that studies the ocean. There are a variety of different types of oceanographers –including physical, geological, chemical, and biological – depending on their interests. These scientists design research projects in order to try to better understand these lands and waters, and often conduct their research within the boundary of the monument itself. 


One key component of the scientific process is publishing one’s findings in a peer reviewed journal. The peer review process allows other experts in the field to evaluate the scientific methods used in a study and ultimately determines an academic paper’s suitability for publication. 

Research conducted within The Monument and the resulting peer reviewed publications have greatly contributed to our knowledge of how this ocean ecosystem operates and who its key players are. To help us better understand what research has been done in this portion of the ocean, we have attempted to compile a list of studies and their published results. We know that this list is not comprehensive; however, we intend to continue in that direction. The linked Excel document is an initial draft that includes brief descriptions of studies that have taken place within the monument (and adjacent waters) and their resulting publication(s). 

Special Use Permits

The National Wildlife Refuge System has three different special use permit application forms that are relevant to The Monument. These special use permits allow the public to engage in activities within the monument. These forms are available in a fillable format.

The prospective permit holder should fill out the appropriate application, sign it, and return it to the superintendent of the monument. The permit is not valid until approved and signed by a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service official.

Commercial Activities 

National Wildlife Refuge System Commercial Activities Special Use Application (FWS Form 3-1383-C) 


  • Commercial activities such as guiding anglers or other outdoor users 
  • Commercial filming (audio, video, and photographic products of a monetary value) 

Research and Monitoring

National Wildlife Refuge System Research and Monitoring Special Use Application (FWS Form 3-1383-R)


  • Research and monitoring activities by students, universities, and other non-FWS or non-NOAA organizations 

General Activity 

National Wildlife Refuge System General Activity Special Use Application (FWS Form 3-1383-G)


  • Miscellaneous events (fishing tournaments, one-time events, other special events) 
  • Educational activity 
  • Other (any activity not mentioned above) 

Contact the monument superintendent to inquire whether we consider the proposed use appropriate or compatible within the monument. 

For other U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wildlife-related permit links that might pertain to your activity, click here

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration jointly developed the Monument Management Plan to guide the work of the Monument for the next 15 years and provide a framework for stewardship and management of this special place.  

This Plan establishes the long-term vision and framework needed to provide proper care for the Monument’s...

Laws and Regulations

Presidential Proclamation 9496 established three categories of activities: prohibited (not allowed), exempted (no permit required), and regulated. The permitting program for regulated activities is designed to manage and minimize human impact to its unique and sensitive natural resources.

The permitting program for regulated activities is designed to manage and minimize human impact to its unique and sensitive natural resources.