The Lanikai Beach and Park Foundation was awarded a grant by the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation in 2013 to address growing concerns of the community about the condition of A'alapapa Reef. Anecdoctal observations made by residents and other resource users of the area indicate long-term declines in the abundance of reef fish and invertebrates. These declines have been observed despite a ban on the use of lay net in Lanikai and the adjacent Kailua Bay and State-wide fishing regulations on catch size and bag limits for some species. A situation analysis was developed to identify priority threats and strategies. A sound scientific basis was considered an esstential first step in understanding the problem.
The Lanikai Beach and Park Foundation engaged the The Nature Conservancy and UH Fisheries Ecology Research Laboratory to conduct a baseline survey of A'alapapa reef. Reef surveys are ongoing covering both shallow and deep water reefs in Lanikai. Over 100 transects are being surveyed to document coral cover and fish populations. This information will be used to identify management interventions. Community volunteers have also been able to support the survey team.