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.
Federal Subsistence Board Approves Changes to Subsistence Hunting Regulations
Last edited 4/27/2016
Federal Subsistence Board Approves Changes to Subsistence Hunting Regulations, Makes Recommendations on the Rural Determinations Process, and Approves Changes to Kuskokwim Chinook Management
The Federal Subsistence Board (Board) met April 15-18, 2014 in Anchorage to consider 55 proposed changes to the Federal subsistence hunting and trapping regulations, recommend changes to the Secretaries of Interior and Agriculture on the Rural Determination process, and consider fisheries special actions affecting the Kuskokwim River. The Board also conducted Tribal and Alaska Native Corporation consultations on the wildlife regulatory proposals, the Rural Determination process, and the special actions.
Rural Determination Process
As directed in the Secretarial review of the Federal Subsistence Management Program, the Federal Subsistence Board, with Regional Advisory Council input, conducted a public review of the current rural determination process. A summary and analysis of the public, Regional Advisory Council, Tribal and Alaska Native Corporation comments was presented to the Board. The Board discussed several options and voted to recommend to the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture that the current regulations be revised to allow for the Board to determine which areas or communities in Alaska are nonrural; all other communities and areas would therefore be rural.
Changes to the Subsistence Hunting and Trapping Regulations
The Board adopted 39 of the 55 proposed changes to Federal hunting and trapping regulations. Among the changes approved by the Board are:
• Permit requirements for caribou in Units 9A, 9B, 9C, 17A, 17B, 17C, 18, 19A, and 19B.
• Subarea RG245 in Unit 6D was opened to the harvest of mountain goats by Federally qualified subsistence users
• The harvest limits were increased, the season dates extended, and the boundaries of the areas for the harvest of moose were modified in Unit 18.
• The Red Sheep and Cane Creek drainages remained closed to non-Federally qualified subsistence hunters during the Aug 10-Sept. 20 sheep season in the Arctic Village Sheep Management Area of Unit 25.
• Changes were made to the harvest limits, season dates, number of permits issued in Units 22D and 22B to protect the continued viability of the muskox population and the continued subsistence uses of muskox. In addition an 804 analysis conducted under Section 804 of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA), which establishes a priority among Federally qualified subsistence users, was adopted by the Board.
• The harvest quota for moose by residents in Units 26C and 26B remainder was increased from 3 to 5.
• Residents of Units 20E, 25B, 25C, and 25D were added to the customary and traditional use determination for sheep.
The Federal subsistence hunting and trapping regulations, effective July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2016, will be available statewide by mid-June. The regulations also will be posted on the Federal Subsistence Management Program website, http://www.doi.gov/subsistence/index.cfm
Fishery Special Actions
The Federal Subsistence Board took action on two Kuskokwim River Chinook Salmon Special Action requests:
• The Board approved the special action request to allow the use of dip nets to take salmon in the Kuskokwim River drainage, with the provision that all Chinook salmon caught be released immediately.
• The Board adopted the special action to close the Federal public waters that are within and adjacent to the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge to the harvest of Chinook salmon except by the residents of the Kuksokwim drainage and the villages of Chefornak, Kipnuk, Kwigillingok, and Kongiganek.
• Additionally, the Board delegated the authority to the in-season manager the authority to determine when the 60-day emergency special actions would start.