NUALOLO KAI — Hunters looking to bag a goat in Kauai’s Napali Coast State Wilderness Park are going to get the chance in 2019, but getting out there is going to depend on the luck of the draw.
The state Department of Land and Natural Resources recently announced a lottery hunting opportunity in 10 acres of the Nualolo Kai area, an opportunity that will happen several times throughout the summer.
Anyone who fits the qualifications can sign up, but only three hunters and their team of three hunter assistants — six people total — will be allowed to go on each hunt, which will be held from April through August.
“There will be multiple hunts made during the course the summer but it will be dependent on favorable ocean and weather conditions,” said Dan Dennison, spokesman for DLNR.
Applications to be part of the goat hunting at Nualolo Kai are available at the DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife office in Lihue, the cost is $5 per person to apply, and the deadline to submit applications is Feb. 28.
Those who apply, though, have to meet a few qualifications before they’re allowed to go on the hunting trip, if they’re chosen in the lottery drawing, set to happen March 8.
All Title 13, Ch. 123 Rules Regulating Game Mammal Hunting apply on the hunt and hunters have to show a valid 2018-19 hunting license. Hunters also have to be able to swim at least 200 yards in ocean conditions and be able to hike on steep and loose terrain.
That’s because they might have to swim.
“Due to Nualolo Kai’s remoteness along Napali Coast and unpredictable ocean conditions, hunters will be required to swim if the boat is not able to get close to shore to drop them off and pick up them up,” Dennison said.
All people attending each hunt will be brought to Nualolo Kai via DLNR boat transportation.
“Nualolo Kai cove is small and allowing multiple boats in the cove presents unsafe conditions, particularly during sudden changes in rough sea conditions. In addition, this would allow the hunting group to focus on the hunt while DLNR manages the boats offshore,” Dennison said.
This hunt will be the first rifle hunt in Nualolo Kai, but in the past, DLNR has opened up the area to year-round archery hunting.
“Due to its remote location and small size, 10 acres, the hunt will be a highly monitored and enforced,” Dennision said.
An introduced species, the feral goats are widespread throughout the main Hawaiian Islands, and are targeted because of their ability to destroy native ecosystems, having much the same impact as the feral pig population, according to the Hawaii Invasive Species Council.
Those interested can obtain an application from the DOFAW office at 3060 Eiwa St., Rm. 306, Lihue. Deadline to submit applications is Feb. 28.
Jessica Else, environment reporter, can be reached at 245-0452 or firstname.lastname@example.org.