Visit your favourite destinations
|A Report from birdtours.co.uk|
Hawaii, 5th -12th December 2004 ,
||Chris McGuigan and I spent a week birding on Hawaii as part of a longer birding trip to New Caledonia and Fiji. The aim was to try and see as many of the endemic species as possible. We particularly wanted to see the Hawaiian Honeycreepers which are often split off as their own unique family. We made little effort to see any of the breeding seabirds as spring is a much better time of year for this and we had a fairly tight schedule.|
Hawaii's isolation in the middle of the Pacific has meant that it is an incredible centre for endemism. This is not just for birds but for all groups that managed to get to the islands. Mammals, except for one bat, failed to make it so the radiation of species was incredible. Honeycreepers are now the best example of this and there were probably at one time in excess of 70 species on the islands. However, in the past this also applied to other families. Unfortunately as with many island groups, man has wreaked havoc to the endemic fauna. Possibly nowhere else in the world has a higher proportion of the bird species been lost than in Hawaii. Sub-fossil records show that before the arrival of man there were at least seven geese, three owls, one eagle, seven rails, three ibises, several crows and presumably many other species whose bones never survived to the present day. All of these were wiped out by the arrival of Polynesian man. When the Europeans arrived they continued the job. Introduced species such as rats, cats, pigs and mongooses predated many species. However the introduction of other bird species caused extinctions that continue today. Along with birds, mosquitoes were introduced and these could carry avian malaria. None of the native Honeycreepers had any immunity to this and as a result they died en masse. Reports tell of birds just falling dead out of trees. Honeycreepers now only really occur above the altitudinal limit of the mosquitoes. Should a new species arrive, or current ones adapt to higher levels, then it is likely many of the remaining species will disappear. Another major potential threat is West Nile Virus. Although mainly effecting Crows what might it do to the other declining Hawaiian endemics? Chris and I decided to visit Hawaii before any more species were lost and while there was still a reasonable chance of seeing a good selection.
To see a good number of the Hawaiian endemics requires work, perseverance and some cost. Native birds are few and one has to spend a lot of time travelling to sites where they occur. Many of these have restricted access and so you have to join organised tours at some cost. Many parts of the islands are swarming with introduced species from all parts of the globe which, as well as making it difficult to find the "locals," produce the impression of being in a large zoo. Although some of the sites are spectacular and give a feel of what it might have been like before man caused such devastation, Hawaii is an extremely depressing place in which to birdwatch. Fully aware of such problems we were going nevertheless. We paid little or no attention to the hordes of introduced birds.
To see as many as possible species you need to visit four islands: Oahu, Kauai, Maui and Hawaii (Big Island).
This is where you will almost certainly arrive, via Honolulu airport. It holds one or two endemic species depending on your taxonomy; Oahu Amakihi (split from Common Amakihi) and Oahu Elepaio (sometimes split from Elepaio). The first of these is not too difficult to see but the second is declining rapidly and far more difficult. The Amakihi here does seem to be developing immunity to malaria and occurs right down to sea level. The easiest site for the Amakihi is supposed to be the Tantalus Loop which is just outside Honolulu. The Elepaio can be seen on the nearby Kuliouou Valley Trail. It is very difficult without a tape though. However, perhaps of just as much interest to a birder is the small wintering population of Bristle-thighed Curlew which occurs at the James Campbell Reserve in the north-east. Otherwise Oahu is the most built up of the islands and is not a place I would particularly want to spend longer than I had to. Unfortunately we did have to! See log.
There are four species that occur only on this island. Poo-Uli is probably extinct. The captive one died while we were out in Hawaii and there are possibly two left in the wild. Neither has been seen for some time and essentially this species, which was only discovered in 1973, has now gone. Maui Parrotbill and Akohekohe (Crested Honeycreeper) can only now be seen by visiting birders on a guided trip along the Rose Gardner boardwalk in the Waikamoi Preserve. However neither is easy and you could be unlucky and dip on both. Maui Creeper though is common. In spring it is possible to see Hawaiian Petrels as they come in at night into the crater of Haleakala Volcano.
This island has the largest remaining tract of forest which can be accessed without special permission. Kokee and the forest up to Alakai Swamp is a superb area with good numbers of native birds. Alakai swamp was the last refuge for many species before two hurricanes devastated the island and effectively wiped them out. It remains a great place though and is the best site for Anianiau, Akekee, Kauai Amakihi, Akikiki and Puaiohi. The last two are difficult to see. To the north-east of the island there are two other important sites; Kilauea Point Nature Reserve and Hanalei National Wildlife Refuge. The first of these is good for breeding Red-footed Boobies and Laysan Albatross. The second is important for Nene, Hawaiian Duck, Coot and Stilt. All of these are easily seen.
Two main areas need to be visited to be sure of seeing the important species. One is the Saddle road along which there are several important sites. All the species can be seen here but to be sure of seeing all the honeycreepers a visit to Hakalau Forest Reserve is necessary. This area can only be accessed with difficulty. Some areas are open on particular weekends and details need to be sorted well in advance. The best but expensive option is to book a tour with Hawaii Forest and Trail who visit the best area of forest and can virtually guarantee all the endemics at this site. These include Omao, Akepa, Akiapolaau, Hawaii Creeper, Hawaiian Hawk and the volcano form of Elepaio.
Along the Saddle road several sites are important. Puu Laau Dry Forest Reserve is an area of dry forest and is the only place for the finch like Palila and pale-headed form of Elepaio. It can be reached by turning off at the 43.3 mile post along the Saddle road and is well signposted. The Puu Oo Trail is on the left at mile 22.5 from Hilo. About 1.5 miles along this an area of large Koa trees which is often good for Akiapolaau. The Kipuka 21 area is good for many species and with a lot of luck all the rainforest species might be seen here. It is right next to Sadlle road at Mile 21. Unfortunately access into the forest is very limited.
One other site worth visiting is Manuka State Park on the west. This is the best site for the intermediate form of Elepaio. We did not do this site.
Car hire is needed on all islands. We booked it in advance over the net. Previously car hire companies have not let you drive over the Saddle Road considering it too dangerous. It is in fact a well surfaced wide road on which you can get up to 70mph. Alamo, at least, now allow you on it although we did not know this at the time and just risked it.
Inter-island flights were pre-booked with Hawaiian Airlines. Their timetable is on their website but unfortunately they are still in the dark ages when it comes to payment. Unlike the Fijian airlines you cannot pay by credit card unless it is a US or Australian card! We therefore had to book with their UK agent Boss Travel (tel 0870 264 5008) which meant an inevitable premium on the flights. Total cost was £249 each.
Oahu we stayed one night at the Backpackers Hostel in Honolulu for $65 for the two of us.
Kauai. The Lodge at Kokee has good value cabins for up to 6 people which can be booked over the phone. They do not have e-mail! Cost $78:40 in total for two nights. There is no food available except at lunch times so take supplies with you. Cabins have fridges, cookers and hot showers. It was the only birding site at which we were able to stay and was far more enjoyable as a result.
Big Island. We booked a room at Arnott's Lodge in Hilo. Essentially a backpackers hostel it was fine for our purposes. Address www.arnottslodge.com
Maui. We booked the self catering Peace of Maui (www.maui.net/~pom/ ) which had been recommended by Renate Gasman. $62 for the room. It was very good and the proprietors very helpful, even getting up early to take us to meet Renate who would not collect us.
None needed on Oahu or Kauai. Unless you have lots of time they are important, if expensive, on Maui and Big Island. On Big Island we used Hawaii Forest and Trail (www.hawaii-forest.com). They had a pre-arranged tour on one weekend and we booked this six months in advance. They were very professional and provided a driver/guide who knew his birds well and where to find them. We used them just for the Hakalau Forest tour and joined eight American birdwatchers some of whom had problems getting to see birds with their bins. The trip was expensive at $155 each but I would recommend it.
On Maui you cannot visit the boardwalk on your own. Free walks are provided on some Saturdays by the Nature Conservancy but these do not give you much time in the area where you can see the Parrotbill or Crested Honeycreeper. To have a chance of seeing these two good looking species you need to visit with a guide. We used Renate Gasman (email@example.com).The cost though is extortionate. She charges $130 each and on top of that the Nature Conservancy charges a further $100 each.
There are many trip reports on the web which we made use of, particularly John Hornbuckle's and Graham Talbot's.
The Hawaii Forest and Trail website has some good stuff on it including calls and songs of some species.
Birding Hawaii (www.birdinghawaii.co.uk ) has detailed information on all of the sites and species.
As a fieldguide we used The Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific by Pratt et al. We also used Pratt's Guide, Enjoying Birds and other Wildlife in Hawaii, which is excellent.
I ordered the tapes to the birds of Hawaii from the American Birding Association but they took ages to come and arrived two days after we left. I copied some songs off the Hawaii Forest and Trail website but as a result we struggled for the Oahu form of Elepaio.
5/12/04 Arrived from Fiji at 07:00. Birded James Campbell reserve and then Tantalus loop.
6/12/04 Tantalus loop then Kuliouou Valley Trail. 18:55 pm flight to Lihue Kauai. Drove to Kokee.
7/12/04 Kokee and Alakai swamp area.
8/12/04 Kokee early am then Hanalei wetland area followed by Kilauea Point Nature Reserve. 17:50 flight to Honolulu and then onto Maui.
9/12/04 Rose Gardner Boardwalk in Waikamoi Preserve. Flight to Honolulu at 19:11 and then onto Hilo, Big Island.
10/12/04 Saddle Road. Kipuka 21 and Puu Laau.
11/12/04 Poo Uli trail before meeting up with tour to Hakalau.
12/12/04 Hilo ponds, flight to Honolulu at 12:20 and then onto Los Angeles.
We arrived at 07:00 from Fiji and eventually worked out how to get to the Alamo car hire office. We had planned to catch the flight out to Kauai later that evening but I had completely forgotten about the International Date Line. Yesterday had also been the fifth of December in Fiji and so we had an extra day on Oahu. After eventually convincing the agent that, no we did not want to come all the way back to the office to get another car tomorrow but wanted to combine everything under one booking, we set off for the James Campbell reserve. After a brief detour via a military airbase which we managed to get out of Honolulu and stopped at a roadside café for some food. After the delights of Fiji this was really grotty and did not exactly fit the paradise impression that is portrayed of Hawaii. We were only really after the Bristle-thighed Curlew at James Campbell Reserve so headed for the golf course and parked by the club house. We then walked
along the track on the inland edge of the course and past the small Japanese Graveyard. The area of dunes beyond this is supposed to be a regular wintering site. There were loads of Pacific Golden Plovers and a few Ruddy Turnstones feeding amongst the horses but no curlews. However, on walking to the dunes proper I soon located several Bristle-thighed Curlews on the deck. We watched them at close quarters over the next hour. More like a warm-brown Whimbrel with bright cinnamon rumps they were very tame and allowed us to approach close enough to easily see their bristles through our bins. After having our fill of these we headed back. We had a 2nd winter Ring-billed Gull over the pools and two ducks, which were probably Hawaiian, fly over. Note however that most of the birds here are hybrids.
After a leisurely lunch we sorted out accommodation and then headed up onto the Tantalus loop to look for Oahu Amakihi. The lay-by described in Pratt's bird finding guide appeared totally useless as everything was very distant. A stop about three bends higher up looked far better with close flowering eucalypts and at least we could make out the Japanese White-eyes pretty well. After a while a different nasal buzzing type call caught my attention and a larger bird flew in. I was sure this was one but within a second it was off. It or another reappeared twice and it was clearly a male Amakihi but only giving brief, poor views. By now the light was fading so we gave up and headed back to town.
6/12/04 Soon after dawn we were back at the same site. This time we were quickly able to latch onto a bird as it gave its Brambling like call. It was a female and we managed to see at least three in all. They all had distinct pale double wing bars. They actively fed in the eucalypt flowers. Having scored with our first honeyeater we headed off to the Kuliouou Valley Trail. We stopped first in one of the parks in Honolulu to look for White Terns but failed to see any. After locating the trail we set off up the valley. Unfortunately we had no tape and there was no sign of any Elepaio. We did however get superb views of a pair of Oahu Amakihi displaying by flicking their wings at each other. The male showed only a small amount of black around the lores. We had a break for lunch before working the trail again but eventually we decided we had been beaten and that it was time to catch our flight to Kauai. Arriving in Lihue we stocked up with food before the one and a half hour drive to Kokee. At the lodge the keys were hanging up as arranged. We crashed out as tomorrow was going to be a long day.
7/12/04 We started along the Pihea Ridge trail from Puu o Kila viewpoint before first light. Soon there were weird calls coming from all around us as the first Apapanes started singing. These can only be described as abundant here and are clearly strong flyers, many of them flying across the valleys. As the light improved we got good views of these deep scarlet birds. Unlike most of the other Honeycreepers though, they were very wary not allowing close approach. The Elepaios were much more obliging allowing very close views. We headed down the steep but easy trail to the intersection of the Alakai Swamp and Pihea trails. This is now mostly boardwalk. This area around the crossroads is supposed to be good for Akikiki and Puaiohi so we spent a long time here. It was certainly a good spot with our first Anianiau and Kauai Amakihis. The first is like a Yellow Warbler while the latter is similar to the Oahu Amakihi but with a heavier, thicker bill, larger dark loral area and dark streaking on the crown. We then headed off onto the trail towards the Alakai swamp and soon had close views of Akekee. Walking up into the swamp produced our first views of the amazing Iiwi. This is one of the wackiest of the honeycreepers with a long, decurved, scarlet bill. Luckily they remain reasonably common above the mosquito belt. We were fortunate with the weather only getting a bit of light drizzle in this, one of the wettest places on earth. Unfortunately we were not so lucky with the two remaining rarities of the area, Akikiki and Puaiohi.
A surprisingly good meal of pasta, pesto and spicy sausage washed down with a good bottle of red wine finished of a good day's birding. It had been great to bird in some high quality habitat with good numbers of native and few introduced species.
8/12/04 Today was going to be a busy day so we drove off at dawn to the Puu o Kila lookout. Apapanes were common in the tree tops and there were also good numbers of Anianiau and Kauai Amakihi. The addition of a couple of Elepaios meant in less than half an hour we had seen all yesterday's species with the exception of Akekee. Looking down from the lookouts we obtained distant views of several White-tailed Tropicbirds flying around the cliffs. It was then a long drive around the island to Hanalei Wetlands where we soon had tame Nenes, Hawaiian Ducks and Hawaiian Stilts in the flooded taro fields. The Nenes have been reintroduced here and because there are no mongooses they are doing very well. We soon picked up several Hawaiian Coots along with a couple of Ring-necked Ducks and a Black-crowned Night-heron. Next we visited the nearby Kilauea Point reserve and had excellent views of a couple of circling Laysan Albatrosses. Unfortunately the nesting birds are only visible through a telescope. There were loads of Red-footed Boobies and several Great Frigatebirds harassing them, forcing one to crash land onto the cliff.
We then caught our flight to Maui via Honolulu. Arriving there we caught a taxi to the guest house. We had not hired a car as Renate had told us it was only 15 minutes from the airport. However the Taxi fare was $23 and we realised we should have hired a car. On 'phoning Renate we were astonished that despite paying her a small fortune she was not prepared to collect us from the accommodation that she had recommended. It was going to be very expensive getting a taxi at 6 am. Luckily the proprietors were equally astonished and very kindly offered to drop us off the next morning at a meeting place which was a shopping mall 10 minutes away.
9/12/04 So at 6am we had been at the pre-arranged meeting place for several minutes waiting for Renate. A car which looked a likely candidate drove right past us twice but did not stop. It then parked in the darkest corner of the car park miles away from the precise location we had been told to be at. I decided that it had to be her as no one else could possibly be sitting around somewhere like this in the dark and went over to investigate. It was indeed her! Both Chris and I were not exactly impressed so far but kept our mouths tightly shut. With Renate was an American photographer who was coming along as well. Maybe we would get a discount? Anyway we drove up to Hosmer Grove and then walked down to the Rose Gardner Boardwalk. Renate was clearly very knowledgeable and was fairly confident we would see the Parrotbill as she had seen them most trips in the last few months. We soon started seeing Maui Creepers, Apapanes, Common Amakihis and Iiwis before we reached the boardwalk. Renate then played us tapes of both our target species. We were not allowed to use them for playback but the Crested Honeycreeper has a whistle that is easily imitated and we were allowed to do that. The boardwalk turned out to be only about 500 metres long and we spent the next five hours walking up and down it. Renate worked hard to try and find our target birds and within twenty minutes we had heard our first Crested Honeyeater and had soon seen one. It popped up on top of a distant snag before dropping out of site. After a while it came closer and we got reasonable views. Then three appeared together calling loudly in response to our whistles. However, there was no sign of the Parrotbill and about half an hour before we had to leave it started to rain. We then had excellent views of a Crested Honeycreeper close in. They are very different to all the other species with a large bushy crest on the forehead and are covered in orange spots. We were now soaked to the skin so headed back to the car. We were disappointed to have dipped on the Parrotbill but we had had good views of the other target species. Luckily Renate very kindly offered to take us back to the guesthouse and then drop us off at the airport for our next flight. I think she felt guilty.
Our flight to Hilo went via Honolulu (which is in the opposite direction) but we got to Hilo and booked into Arnott's Lodge who had no record of us. Luckily I had the reservation number and that glitch was soon sorted. Our room was fine so we sorted out a meal and crashed out.
10/12/04 The plan today was to do the Saddle road sites and then Mauna Kea state park for the intermediate form of Elepaio. After a late breakfast we set off up the Saddle road and found it to be an empty, wide and fast road and soon arrived at Kipuka 21. Here to my horror I discovered I had left my mini-disk player behind. We decide to continue birding and soon had seen the volcano form of Elepaio which, with its dark throat and rusty tinges, is very different from the Kauai form. There were many Apapanes calling and another new call which I am sure now was Akiapolaau. However we could not track it down and decided to head for the Palila site. This we found easily but the birds were another matter. We walked up beyond the cabin but although there were loads of Common Amakihis finding Palila was clearly going to be a struggle. Eventually 2 birds flew over but from my angle, looking straight into the sun, they looked like House
Finches. Chris though was much closer with had the sun behind him and got half decent views. Despite a lot of effort we still were having no joy and the lack of tape was a major problem. We decided to risk returning to Hilo and collect the mini-disk and come back up for another crack. On the way down the track we managed to get views of a couple of pale-headed Elepaios which at least was a start.
On the lower section of the road I spotted a low raptor circling above us. It was a Hawaiian Hawk. It was a very stocky, short and broad winged bird very reminiscent to me of Ayre's Hawk-eagle rather than a buteo.
Returning to the hostel we decided to phone Hawaii Forest and Trail to confirm the tour the following morning. I suggested we met at the entrance to Mauna Kea State park as that would then give us a couple of hours birding before the tour started and avoid us having to drive as far. The member of staff I spoke to was incredulous we should try and drive such a dangerous road. I told her we already had and that it was a perfectly good one (I did not mention we had reached 70mph) but they were only too happy to meet as suggested.
So it was straight back up to Puu Laau Dry Forest Reserve. Waiting at some traffic lights on the edge of Hilo we were surprised to see another Hawaiian Hawk. Back at Puu Laau despite the tape we still had no joy. Their call is remarkably similar to one the Common Amakihi makes and we were following up a lot of wrong birds. We decided to drive as high up as we could as Palila are supposed to be commoner the further up you go. We drove until the road was too rough for our saloon and then started hiking. It is quite an altitude here and Chris started lagging behind. The sun was dropping by now and we only had a little time left. I was getting some response to the tape but was fairly sure that it was coming from Amakihis when a larger bird flew in and perched in the orange rays of the setting sun. I quickly got my scope on it and screamed to Chris that I had one. I did not envy him the slow jog uphill at that altitude but the bird stayed for over five minutes. Its thick, rounded bill had a little hook on the tip which was visible in the scope. This is the only remaining finch-like honeycreeper that birders can see (the other two are on closed islands) and it was with much relief that we had seen this one. Fifteen minutes later it was dark and we were on our way back to Hilo.
It had been a frustrating day caused by my forgetting the mini-disk and then compounding the error by not retrieving it straight away. We had at least seen Palila and the Hawk and had given ourselves some extra time the following morning to try and get Akiapolaau. There was no chance now of seeing the intermediate form of Elepaio though.
11/12/04 This morning we were determined to atone for our errors of yesterday. Just after first light we were at the beginning of the Puu Oo Trail. This is a regular site for Akiapolaau which is far from guaranteed in Hakalau. As Aki (which is how it is usually called) was my most sought after bird in Hawaii, I wanted to try and see one before the Hakalau tour if possible. One and a half miles along the trail there is a large group of Koa trees and this is where they can often be seen. We found the group of trees easily enough and walked off the lava under the canopy. I played a tape and at once a male responded and came in close. It then started to feed right above our heads. It hammered the small branches with its short lower mandible while holding the upper one out of the way. It would then use its incredibly long, curved upper mandible to probe under any dislodged bark or moss. It was then joined by a female and we watched them both, thrilled to get such views of such an amazing and rare bird. We decide we had better get a move on and hiked straight out and drove to the rendezvous getting there in good time for the nine o'clock pick up. The bus soon arrived and served us breakfast while we chatted with the other members of the group. They were all a fair bit older than us and had already been on the bus for 2hrs from Kona so were clearly glad of the break. As we drove up to Hakalau we saw several Short-eared Owls from the bus. They are only an endemic subspecies here and it is strongly suspected that they did not fully colonise the islands until the Polynesians introduced mice and rats. Arriving at the reserve we were greeted by a pair of colour-ringed Nene before walking into the forest. This was dominated by tall Koa trees and was full of birds. Apapanes, Amakihis and Iiwis flew around the tree tops giving great views. Some of the participants unfortunately had great problems getting onto these vivid birds but with help they eventually all succeeded. Akepa was at first more difficult but Kevin, our guide, knew his stuff and was hearing them at regular intervals. Chris then got onto a female high in the canopy and soon we had seen several males really well. We saw several Hawaii Creepers feeding up and down small trunks and also several Omaos. We even managed more Aki's including a juv and very obliging female. Kevin our guide had been excellent and gave us a lot of info about the forest and birds.
Lastly we decided to head down to the active lava fields where they flow into the sea. It was well past dark when we arrived and a walk out to the glowing lava was clearly too dangerous this late. Loads of people were leaving as dusk is the time to visit but we had run out of time. The glow of the lava nevertheless was impressive and would definitely be worth getting right up to if you have time.
12/12/04 Our final couple of hours this morning were spent around Hilo ponds looking at ducks and coots before catching our flight back to Honolulu and on to LA. It had been a pretty successful trip considering the time constraints. We had opted for four days birding in California on the way back rather than depressing ourselves by staying longer in Hawaii in order to dig out a couple more difficult ticks. If we had had tapes and maybe an extra day on Kauai instead of Oahu, we might have done better. However considering the potential logistical pitfalls of the whole of our pacific trip we had had very few problems and were very satisfied with how we had done.
NSp= new species
Laysan Albatross (Diomedea immutabilis)
NSp. 14 Kilauea Point. Most on the ground rather a long way off but a couple flying around close too.
White-tailed Tropicbird (Phaethon
20+ Kilauea Point, also many distant birds below the Kokee lookouts and Waikamoi canyon.
Red-footed Booby (Sula sula)
Approx 300 Kilauea Point.
Brown Booby (Sula leucogaster)
5 Kilauea Point.
Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor)
15 Kilauea Point.
Black-crowned Night-heron (Nycticorax nicticorax) 1 ad Hanalei, 1 imm Hilo.
Nene (Branta sandwichensis)
E.NSp. 30 Hanalei, 2 Hakalau.
Hawaiian Duck (Anas wyvilliana)
Ring-necked Duck ( Aythya collaris)
1 Hanalei, 1 Hilo.
Lesser Scaup (Aythya affinis)
Hawaiian Hawk (Buteo solitarius)
E.NSp. 2 Saddle road, 1 Hakalau.
Hawaiian Coot (Fulica alai)
E.NSp. 5 Hanalei, 10 Hilo.
Pacific Golden Plover (Pluvialis fulva)
Common even in the middle of towns.
Ruddy Turnstone (Arenaria interpres)
12 James Campbell reserve.
Bristle-thighed Curlew (Numenius tahitiensis)
NSp. 6 James Campbell reserve.
Ring-billed Gull ( Larus delawarensis}
1 second winter James Campbell.
Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus)
Omao (Myadestes obscurus)
E.NSp. 5 Hakalau.
Elepaio (Chasiempis sandwichensis)
E.NSp. Over 30 of the Kauai form (sclateri) on the trail from Kokee to Alakai Swamp.
2 of the pale-headed form "Mauna Kea Elepaio" (bryani) at Puu Laau.
2 of the dark nominate form "Hawaii Elepaio" at Hakalau and at Kipuka 21.
We failed to see the "Oahu (ibidis)" and did not try for the "intermediate (ridgewayi) Elepaios".
Palila (Loxioides bailleui) E.NSp. 1 eventually seen just before dusk at Puu Laau.
Kauai Amakihi (Viridonia stejnegeri)
E.NSp. 13 in the Kokee/Alakai swamp area. Seemed larger, much heavier billed than Common Amakihi with a noticeably streaked forehead.
Common Amakihi (Viridonia virens)
E.NSp. 10 on Maui, 10 Hakalau, common at the Saddle road sites and very common at Puu Laau.
Oahu Amakihi (Viridonia flavens)
E.NSp. Untickable views of one on our first evening on the Tantalus loop. We had 3 the following morning in the Eucalypts there the following morning. We then had brilliant views of a pair displaying just below us on the Kuliouou Valley Trail.
Anianiau (Viridonia parva)
E.NSp. 5 on our first and 6 on our second day at Kokee.
Akiapolaau (Hemignathus wilsoni)
E.NSp. We were thrilled to get stunning views of a pair of these on the Puu Oo trail early in the morning before the Hakalau tour. The male gave excellent views and demonstrated its amazing bill to great effect. We subsequently saw 3 more on the tour.
Hawaii Creeper (Oreomystis mana)
E.NSp. Three at Hakalau. Could initially easily be overlooked if poor views obtained or you do not check all the Amakihis carefully. They behave differently feeding along trunks and branches.
Maui Creeper (Paroreomyza montana)
E.NSp. Thirty or so in the Hosmer Grove area.
Akekee (Loxops caeruleirostris)
E.NSp. 2 on the trail from Kokee to the Alakai Swamp.
Akepa (Loxops coccineus)
E.NSp. 6 Hakalau.
Iiwi (Vestiaria coccinea)
E.NSp. 2 Alakai Swamp, 20 Waikamoi, and 35 plus at Hakalau and Kipuka 21.
Akohekohe (Palmeria dolei)
E.NSp. 4 Waikamoi.
Apapane (Himatione sanguinea)
E.NSp. Possibly the most abundant Honeycreeper being common at all upland sites but not seen on Oahu.