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Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

One of the largest of Hawaiʻi’s forest birds at 6-inches in length, the palila is unmistakable with it’s bright yellow head and gray back with light gray belly. They are found only on the southwest slopes of Mauna Kea where they feed almost exclusively on immature green mamane bean pods. These pods are extremely toxic, ...
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Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The ʻōmaʻo is one of only two remaining species of native thrush (the other being the endangered puaiohi of Kauaʻi) that were once common throughout Hawaiʻi. They eat fruit and play a role in spreading native plants throughout the forest. Mysteriously, they have not been seen in the Kona and Kohala areas of Hawaiʻi Island ...
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Hawaii elepaio

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The curious ʻelepaio is a lively bird of the Hawaiian forest. At only 5-inches long, they flit through the forest trees catching insects. A rusty brown body with streaks of chestnut, dark brown, and white, they are distinct when they sit with their tail upright. Listen for their dog-toy-like squeak, “el-e-PAI-o.” Hawaiian canoe makers revered ...
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Hawaiian short-eared owl

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The majestic pueo is Hawaiʻi’s endemic owl. At about 15-inches tall, they are brown and beige with dark brown streaks and piercing yellow eyes. Unlike other owls, you’ll see pueo hunting during the day in open pastures and forests. Their exciting chase is punctuated with a hover over their prey of mice, insects, or birds ...
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black noddy

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

Noio are an endemic subspecies of black noddy and are present year-round in Hawaiʻi. They are often observed near sea cliffs when breeding. Their breeding season is variable, but many birds begin to nest on ocean cliff ledges and caves in late spring. Noio are 14 inches long with a 28 inch wingspan. Their feathers ...
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Hawaiian black-necked stilt

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The aeʻo, or Hawaiian black-necked stilt, is easy to spot with their long pink legs, and black and white feather colors. Though endangered, they are often seen at their favorite ponds and mudflats feeding on fish, crabs, worms and aquatic insects. Though only 15 inches in length, they have the longest legs of any bird, ...
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Hawaiian coot

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The ʻalae keʻokeʻo, or Hawaiian coot, are charming 14-inch water birds. Their black body and white beak and forehead stand out as they coast along the water. Occasionally, some will have a reddish forehead and dark peak. Found in open marshes and ponds, you’ll see dip their head in the water in search of small ...
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Hawaiian hawk

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

Not many birds are as graceful and stately as the native ʻio, or Hawaiian hawk, seen soaring over fields, forest edges, and even towns. ʻIo are between 16-18 inches long, males are smaller than females. There are two major color phases that can be observed: dark phase birds are dark brown throughout; and light phase ...
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Newell’s shearwater

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The ʻaʻo, or Newell’s shearwater, is closely related to the Townsend’s Shearwater of the Galapagos. This small shearwater is black above, white below and has white “saddlebags” that come up near its hips. It was estimated that there were 19,000 breeding pairs in the 1980s but their population is in steep decline and it estimate ...
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Hawaiian petrel

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The endangered ʻuaʻu are around 16 inches long and have a 36-inch wingspan. Their head, wings and tail are a sooty color with a slightly paler back and their forehead and underparts are white with a short tail. They are usually only seen near land during their breeding season (March to October). where they nest ...
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Hawaiian duck

Posted on Aug 8, 2017 in

The endemic koloa, looks similar to the female mallard, but smaller at around 16 to 22 inches. Male and females look alike with dark bills, dark sides and cinnamon colored tail. One way to spot a koloa is by their teal colored patch of wing feathers. Unlike mallards, koloa mostly live in mountain streams. This ...
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Hawaiian goose

Posted on Jun 30, 2017 in

Hawaiʻi’s State bird, the nēnē, is an iconic favorite among locals. Though endangered, they have recovered spectacularly since near extinction in the 1940s and now are found on Hawaiʻi Island, Maui, and Kauaʻi, though carefully managed. Related to the Canada goose, the nēnē differ in their smaller stature at about 25” tall and a white ...
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