Turtles live year round in the waters off Kanaha, some will occasionally come ashore to build nests and lay eggs. If you see a turtle hauled out on the beach stay away from it and let it rest. If you see a turtle’s nest do not disturb it. It is best if you can report its location to the lifeguards so that they can protect it from harm. Turtle species we see at Kanaha include some endangered species such as the Green sea turtle, Hawksbill, and Leatherback. Turtles (Honu) do their part eating algae and some species will eat jellyfish. Unfortunately they occasionally eat trash (perhaps mistaking plastic bags for jellyfish) and get sick.
When enjoying water sports, paddling or windsurfing etc, please keep an eye out for Turtles in the water and do everything you can to avoid them. Respect them in their home, and actively avoid disturbing them in any way.
Marine mammals you can see at Kanaha include:
- The Hawaiian monk seal (`Ilio-holo-i-ka-uaua.),
- Dolphins (spinner, bottlenose, and spotted) (Nai’a in Hawaiian) and
- Whales (Kohola).
All marine mammals are protected from harm or harassment in Hawaiian waters. Do not approach a marine mammal or attempt to interfere with them in any way.
SHARKS (Mano) species include, Grey (Mano), Whitetip reef (Mano lalakea), hammerhead, and Tiger shark (Niuhi). Occasionally Hawaiian waters are home to the Whale Shark (which is more shark than whale). Sharks rarely attack humans, however you should always use caution when entering the ocean. Never go into the ocean if you are cut or bleeding. Stay away from dead fish, fishermen, nets. Stay away from streams and rivers especially after rain, and when the water is murky from rainfall runoff. Do not swim too far from shore, alone or at night. Do not enter the water if there has been a shark sighting. Follow warning signs and directives of the lifeguards. If you see a shark while swimming, swim calmly to shore, do not splash excessively, and try to keep your eye on the shark at all times.