World War 2 – WWII, brought dramatic changes to Kanaha. the building of the NAS, Naval Air station in Kahului, aka “NASKa”. (Now known as Kahului Airport – OGG). There are also coastal fortifications for artillery, as well as new roads, and recreational; facilities for the troops. Artifacts and evidence of our history are spread throughout the beach and dunes. Unfortunately there seems to have been no effort to preserve these artifacts and many are still undocumented. If you explore the area you will find many interesting and intriguing things.
Military on Maui during WWII: Maui was a huge training area for the military during the war. There were two major airfields, and camps and training areas all over the island.
Preserve our History: Please do not take away or disturb any artifacts as they are part of the historical record, and give us information about our recent history.
Here is a shoreline bunker, it was originally on land but shoreline erosion has caused it to be in the ocean.
(*Since before the war and up until the late 1970’s sand mining and sand removal continued in these areas for decades accelerating the beach loss).
This is what appears to be an artillery placement, and it is adjacent to a concrete bunker at Ka’a Point. Once it would have had a 270 degree view of the Kahului bay, but it is now surrounded by Kiawe trees.
This rusting collection of metal includes rails and rail wheels. Is it part of the same installation or is it something different? There is all kinds of metal pieces strewn all over this area, presumably from ww2 era equipment.
Here is a concrete bunker hidden in the dunes behind the beach.
Cane Toad: Rhinella marina were first introduced to Oahu, Hawaii in 1932. 148 Toads were released by sugar growers to control sugar cane beetles. Descendants of this original introduction were subsequently spread, intentionally, throughout the Hawaiian Islands, and is a major pest on all islands including Maui. The Toads couldn’t do a good job of controlling the cane beetle as the sugar cane stalks are often towering 6-8 feet high so most of the cane beetles sitting on the stalks were out of reach for the ground dwelling toads. The introduction of cane toads was a biological blunder and failure of epic proportions. Toads in Hawaii have no natural predators, they reproduce quickly and have little or no competition. The intentional release of this alien species of cane toads by the Sugar Cane industry was an ecological disaster for the Hawaiian islands because these toads indiscriminately preyed upon local insects and native frog species. Cane Toads produce toxic compounds through their skin, so do not touch them, or let your animals lick or bite them.
Feral Cats (are abundant in the coastal areas. Most of the cats you see are part of cat communities set up by the humane society. Individual cats have been captured then spayed or neutered to prevent further breeding. Then they are released into one of several “communities” where they are monitored and fed by volunteers. Cat communities are a humane alternative to the immediate destruction of wild cats. Sadly people continue to dump their unwanted pets at Kanaha, so the animals are victims of this man-made problem. Many cats from Kanaha Beach are rescued and taken to the shelter where they are adopted into new homes. This important work is done by volunteers, and members of the Maui Humane Society. If you want a new pet, please adopt one from the MHS, http://www.mauihumanesociety.org/
Mongoose (Herpestes javanicus) were introduced to help control rats. They now run wild all over the island, they probably do more harm to bird species than any rats. Mongoose move very fast and are usually shy, Most people will catch a fleeting glimpse of one when they dart in to the bushes at the edge of the roadway. In several camping areas mongoose have become emboldened and less wary of Man. They will stroll around the campgrounds looking for food scraps. The mongooses found in Hawai’i are native to India and were originally introduced to the Hawaiian Islands in 1883 by the sugar industry to control rats in sugarcane fields on Maui, Moloka’i and O’ahu.