Day 313 – “I’m a creeper, I’m a weirdo….I wish I were special..”

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#803 – Crested Honeycreeper (Akohekohe)
#804 – Maui Creeper (Alauahio)

Yesterday we spent the day in the Waikamoi Preserve, on a guided tour with the Nature Conservancy and arranged by our tour group, Wildside Nature Tours. Our goal, of course, was to see the endangered forest birds of Maui. The Preserve is only open a few days per month.

Waikamoi gets 300″ of precipitation per year. Yesterday was no exception.
The rainfall gives this cloud rainforest an other-worldly lushness. The ground is completely covered in Ferns. The trail goes from about 7000′ down to 6100, ending in an elevated, narrow boardwalk. The climb back up is strenuous but beautiful.

We had 3 target birds. The Maui Creeper, the Crested Honeycreeper and the Maui Parrotbill. We saw one, heard one and the Parrotbill was a no-show. This bird is the most endangered of all. I was hopeful but realistic.

We had many I’iwi, Amakihis and Apapanes, the other forest birds, which was great to see.

The trip to Maui was short. Today we’re heading to the Big Island. In September I missed a few birds here. I’m hoping to add them on this trip.

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