The Battle of Midway took place half way between the United States and Asia in World War II. It was a major battle that in history would go down as one of the turning points in World War II’s Pacific theater. Thousands lost their lives here and to commemorate this loss of life a sanctuary was dedicated to save lives.
3,000 people died during the fighting that happened on these islands. The buildings that once stood are now boarded up. The only ones that are running are those used by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff and volunteers. They work to protect both the wildlife that call this place home and to help to preserve this historic site.
Battle of Midway Wildlife Sanctuary
Millions of seabirds call this place home. The short-tailed albatross is only found here and one other place in the Pacific. Laysan albatrosses call this place home and its the largest colony of its kind.
They mate for life here and raise their young here each year. The three islands that make up Midway are surrounded by coral reefs as well. These help to feed the endangered monk seals and green sea turtles that visit the reserve.
These vital and endangered animals call this small group of islands home. They bring life back to a place where so much death happened.
Recently President Barrack Obama announced that they were expanding this Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument. It will now be the biggest oceanic preserve, working to protect vulnerable species from the reach of humanity.
This area was originally preserved in 1988 as the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. At this time it was under the control of the Navy but this changed in 1996. It is now managed by the wildlife agency. It received its new name of National Memorial to the Battle of Midway in 2000.