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Field Accommodations

Tern Island, Hawaii

Photo by Kelli Burkinshaw


Tern Island in the Hawaiian Archepeligo
Tern Island is a tiny island 500 miles northwest of the main Hawaiian Islands that is home to tens of thousands of nesting tropical seabirds, including albatross, frigatebirds, boobies, terns, and petrels. Year round, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service field crews, ranging from 4 to 15 people, live and work on the island to study the bird and marine mammal life. Most field crew members stay for 4 to 6 months at a time, during which time communication with the outside work is limited to single-sideband radio and a satellite Internet connection. Mail and supplies from the mainland come by plane or boat every few months. Text by Brie Drummond.

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