K6VVA/6 * IOTA NA-178

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About NA-178 (The Farallon NWR)

FWS Photo: SouthEast Farallon Island

SouthEast Farallon Island (SEFI) is the largest in The Farallon Islands, which grouped together are known the Farallon National Wildlife Refuge. The Refuge is located approximately 28 miles West of San Francisco, California, and adminstered by the United States Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS). It is "home" to approximately 300,000 migratory birds, sea lions, sharks & other wildlife.

  • General Information about the Farallon NWR
  • Downloadable FWS Brochure (4.8MB .pdf)
  • History of the Farallon Islands - A Must Read!
  • List of Farallon NWR Migratory Birds
  • USFWS Volunteer Program Information
  • In addition to the Management activities of the FWS, by means of a longstanding "Coooperative Work Agreement" with the Point Reyes Bird Observatory (PRBO) organization, there is considerable habitat conservation and research which also takes place by PRBO personnel on SouthEast Farallon Island. Several researchers live on SEFI year round for purposes of research and monitoring access to the Island.

    Since many Worldwide IOTA Ham operators are also conservation and wildlife enthusiasts who frequently make independent donations to bona fide conservation and research organizations, we encourage consideration for membership in, and support of, the activities of the PRBO at this Globabally significant bird area and wildlife habitat. Should you decide to participate, please be sure and reference the fact that you are a Ham Radio Operator (and let us know too).

  • PRBO Research Studies on The Farallons
  • PRBO Membership and Donations
  • In addition to ongoing maintainence needs of limited infrastructure on SEFI requiring contractors, plumbers, etc., volunteers frequently bring supplies to the Island staff via small vessels from the mainland. The supplies must be transferred into a small boat which is then hoisted onto SEFI via a derrick (crane). Due to changing sea conditions, these volunteers are sometimes forced to return to the mainland before completing their mission.

    Volunteers are also used for annual invasive weed control on SEFI (i.e., the hand-pulling of weeds), as well as assisting in the ongoing challenge of preparing old infrastructure items (water piping, etc.) for removal from the Island. If you are interested in volunteering to assist the Refuge, please let us know.

    SouthEast Farallon Island has an extremely colorful and rich history, including a unique diversity of activities. The focus now, however, includes removal of unnecessary past infrastructure items to restore the Island to more of its original habitat status. A United States Coast Guard lighthouse will, of course, remain perched atop the highest point on SEFI as an important navigational aide.

    The Farallon NWR and SouthEast Farallon Island are not open to the general public. In order to minimize any impact to the wildlife at the habitat, only a very small number of research scientists, FWS personnel and/or media representatives are permitted to be on SEFI at any one time. Non-Emergency Refuge maintainance needs utilizing various contractors and any Cooperative Work Agreement projects are generally scheduled during periods of lowest wildlife population on the Island.

    The following are links to additional information about the Farallon Islands:

  • USGS Regional Map of The Farallons
  • Nesting Boxes Project for Auklets
  • Artificial Bird Nesting Boxes Project
  • Seal Rookery Information
  • About the Fur Seals
  • Scuba Divers Rescue Humpback Whale Near Farallons
  • Wind & Surf Conditions at the Farallon Islands
  • Farallon Islands Bibliography
  • The FWS is very interested in expanding the General Public's knowledge about The Farallon NWR as an important wildlife habit resource. We encourage you to forward this webpage to your friends and colleagues who may be interested in learning more about The Farallon National Wildlife Refuge...an area of Global significance.

      The Farallon National Wildlife Refuge is one of over 540 Refuges managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the primary purpose of wildlife conservation. The Refuge supports the largest seabird nesting colony in the continental U.S., and is an important breeding and resting area for marine mammals. Seabirds and seals on the Farallons are slowing   re-building their numbers which were reduced by past human activities, and wildlife is still vulnerable to human disturbance. Only activities that contribute directly to the management or conservation of Refuge resources are permitted on the Farallon islands.  


    The views and conclusions contained in this posting are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions or policies of the U.S. Government. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute their endorsement by the U.S. Government.