Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
Interior Department Releases Report on Bison Management, Reaffirming Commitment to Work With States, Tribes and Other Partners
Office of the Secretary
Comprehensive report charts course to promote restoration of healthy, ranging bison to appropriate levels on public and tribal lands
Last edited 4/26/2016
WASHINGTON – The Department of the Interior today released a comprehensive report on bison conservation and management that reaffirms the commitment to work with states, tribes and other partners to promote the restoration of bison to appropriate and well-managed levels on public and tribal lands.
“The Interior Department has more than a century-long legacy of conserving the North American bison, and we will continue to pursue the ecological and cultural restoration of the species on behalf of the American public and American Indian tribes who have a special connection to this iconic animal,” said Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell.
“This report reaffirms our commitment to work with many partners to ensure healthy, ranging bison contribute not only to the conservation of the species, but also to sustainable local and regional economies and communities,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks Rachel Jacobson.
The report, “DOI Bison Report: Looking Forward” outlines plans to work cooperatively with tribes, states, landowners, conservation groups, commercial bison producers, agricultural interests and others interested in bison to restore the nation's bison population to a proper ecological and cultural role on appropriate landscapes within its historical range.
The report also details new developments in brucellosis quarantine that may allow healthy bison from the well known Yellowstone herd to be relocated outside the Greater Yellowstone Area, if they are quarantined and determined to be brucellosis-free. This raises the potential that for the first time in over a half century, Yellowstone bison could once again contribute to the broader conservation of the species beyond the Greater Yellowstone Area without spreading brucellosis. When evaluating whether to implement a brucellosis quarantine program in the future, Interior will follow all necessary processes to ensure full involvement by states, tribes, and the public.
In addition, the report underscores the Department's commitment to working with American Indian tribes to restore the buffalo, as it is commonly referred to in Indian Country, on both public and tribal lands because of its cultural, religious, nutritional, and economic importance to many tribes.
When European settlers first arrived in North America, the plains bison population was estimated at about 40 million animals. By the late 19th century, there were approximately 25 bison left in the wild.
Since that time, Interior has played a significant role in saving the North American bison from extinction, stabilizing its population, and protecting and promoting the species' genetic diversity. Interior lands now support 17 bison herds in 12 states for a total of approximately 10,000 bison over 4.6 million acres of Interior and adjacent lands, accounting for one third of all bison managed for conservation in North America.
The report was first called for by Secretary Ken Salazar in 2012 .