Kamehameha Butterflies in the Koa Forests

Kamehameha Butterflies in the Koa Forests

For the past several months I have been hiking to the koa forests of Oʻahu and Hawaiʻi Island to look for Kamehameha Butterflies. Kamehameha Butterflies (Vanessa tameamea) are one of only two butterfly species endemic to the Hawaiian Islands.  Known as “Lepelepe...
Koa Moth Explosion on Hawaiʻi Island

Koa Moth Explosion on Hawaiʻi Island

When I heard that a population explosion of koa moths was defoliating thousands of acres of koa forests on Hawaiʻi Island I had to see for myself. The Department of Land and Natural Resources announced on February 14, 2013 that an outbreak of koa looper moths was...
Baby Kāhuli in the Native Forest

Baby Kāhuli in the Native Forest

I hiked in the Mokuleʻia Forest Reserve to see kāhuli or Oʻahu tree snails crawling on the native vegetation. During the night the temperature dropped to the low 60’s and rain fell intermittently on our campsite at about 2,200 feet elevation.  When I got up at...
Hidden Stream and Falls

Hidden Stream and Falls

I seized a rare opportunity to see some hidden waterfalls tucked away in a remote valley on the island. When Cory Yap invited us to go with him to repair weather and stream monitoring equipment in a remote stream, we jumped at the chance.  Cory works for the Hawaii...
ʻAlae ʻUla Breeding Season

ʻAlae ʻUla Breeding Season

For the past several months, I have been hiking in and around the marshes and wetlands of windward Oʻahu looking for ʻalae ʻula or Hawaiian moorhen. The Hawaiian Moorhen, also known as the Hawaiian gallinule or mudhen (Gallinula chloropus sandvicensis) is one of 12...
Rare Native Plants and Animals in the Waiʻanae Mountains

Rare Native Plants and Animals in the Waiʻanae Mountains

For quite some time now I have been exploring remote ridges and gullies in the Waiʻanae Mountains to look for rare native plants and animals. Much of the Waiʻanae Mountains lie in the rain shadow of the Koʻolau Mountains and makes the Waiʻanae Mountains significantly...