Exploring the marine monument

  • Courtesy of Kaua‘i Ocean Discovery

    Dr. Randy Kosaki uses a rebreather while preparing for a dive off the coastline of O‘ahu.

LIHU‘E — Dr. Randy Kosaki, research coordinator for the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, will be the first March First Friday speaker March 6 at 5:30 p.m. at the Kaua‘i Ocean Discovery center in Kukui Grove Center.

“Dr. Kosaki leads the research program for this marine managed area that is one of the largest on the planet, and located immediately northwest of Kaua‘i,” said Jean Souza, the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary program specialist, and in charge of the Kaua‘i Ocean Discovery.

“As most folks to this new learning center have experienced, the natural and cultural resources of the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument and World Heritage Site are both expansive and significant.”

Kosaki will be presenting on Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument: New Frontiers for Research and Exploration.

Kosaki is a coral reef fish ecologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. Born in Hawai‘i, Kosaki received a bachelor’s degree in marine biology from Occidental College, and a doctorate degree from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.

His research specialization is in the use of advanced dive technologies such as closed-circuit rebreathers to explore the coral reef “twilight zone,” or mesophotic coral reefs between 150 feet and more than 330 feet from the ocean’s surface.

While his research is primarily focused on the remote reefs of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, Kosaki has gone to numerous localities across the tropical Pacific.

His spare time is spent reading about fish, photographing fish, catching fish, cooking fish and eating fish.

The presentation is free. The Kaua‘i Ocean Discovery is located near the Famous Footwear and Gamestop stores in the mall.

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Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or dfujimoto@thegardenisland.com.

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