In Pago Pago
Rose Atoll is a tiny uninhabited island located about 180 miles east-southeast of Pago Pago Harbor. Rose was established as a National Wildlife Refuge in 1973. Changes in fishing rights laws may have created some confusion over the status of fishing rights but it is best to just consider Rose Atoll and the surrounding sea as a no take zone. If you are ever privileged to visit Rose, please just leave everything as you found it.
Pago Pago Marine Charters, a company based in American Samoa, offers charter services to Rose.
On January 6, 2009, Rose Atoll Marine National Monument was established, including Rose Atoll National Wildlife Refuge within its boundaries. For more information, please visit the Rose Atoll Marine National Monument webpage. With the establishment of the National Monument status, the protected area is extended to 50 nautical miles from shore for a total area of approximately 13,436 square miles. The subsistence fishermen of Manu’a have taken issue with the blocking of their traditional fishing areas.
Note from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:
“The Service does permit research and biological surveys on the refuge to further the understanding or the natural resources and to improve the management of these natural resources on the refuge or within the National Wildlife Refuge System. Access to the atoll is restricted by the Fish and Wildlife Service, and entry into the lagoon or onto the island is prohibited without prior approval. In order to prevent the introduction of alien species to the island and lagoon, Refuge staff maintain a rigid entry permit application and review process.”
Link to the official U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website on Rose Atoll.