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Old Friday 21st May 2010, 19:50   #1
ehrodz
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Birding West Maui

I will be in Maui for a few days to attend a wedding in mid to late June and should have some time to bird. My preference would be to see some of Hawaii's native forest birds. I know that the best places to see these are in Haleakala Park and parks on the road to Hana. Since I am staying in Ka'anapali and it takes 3+ hours to get to these places in East Maui, I may be limited to birding West Maui. Does anyone know of places to bird in the West Maui area? Thanks.
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Old Saturday 22nd May 2010, 17:06   #2
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West Maui (and Maui in general) has very little wilderness access as far as I know, and very few forest birds even if you were able to get up there - there would only be 'amakihi and 'apapane. I feel bad for people living on Maui because they're basically shut out of their wilderness, and the island is horribly deforested. It's difficult to even find any native plants in the developed areas of Maui. I'm not sure if you can see 'apapane or 'amakihi in the 'iao valley. It's possible somebody knows of a Secret Road hunters use to get to the forest in West Maui - I haven't heard of any, but I never researched it.

If you like watery birds there are some small wetlands in Kahului and just north of Kihei.

The easiest places for a tourist to see native forest birds would be the alien tree plantation called "hosmer's grove" just inside the Haleakala national park entrance, and the wonderful native subalpine shrubland between there and Halemau'u Trail. The Waikamoi tours run by the national park have a history of being very unreliable - they often cancel at the last minute. If you were lucky the Maui Forest Bird Recovery Project or Nature Conservancy people might be running a Waikamoi tour. I highly doubt there is anywhere to see native forest birds on the "road to Hana" without some serious 4WD and time investment, but I've never been through there.

You might see if you can find a private guide, though I myself don't know of any on Maui.

www.mauiforestbirds.org
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Old Saturday 22nd May 2010, 18:33   #3
lmans66
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So sad but true....I am not a resident of Hawaii bkrownd is but from my 4 trips to Maui, I have found that I find birds around the beach area etc....but no true preserve of sorts to capture the wildlife with camera or bino. It is truly a tourist destination now although I do enjoy the kona beer...
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Old Saturday 22nd May 2010, 18:43   #4
bkrownd
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For your enjoyment, I took photos during the Waikamoi bird survey last year - mostly of plants and forestscapes. Most of these are not accessible to the public:

http://www.pbase.com/bkrownd/maui_wilderness
http://www.pbase.com/bkrownd/maui_birds
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Old Saturday 22nd May 2010, 22:24   #5
ehrodz
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bkround, imans,

Sorry to hear about Maui's deforestation. Almost as sad as the depopulation of its original inhabitants. But thanks for the information, at least I know what not to expect in the way of birding. I guess I'll have to spend more of my free time while in Maui snorkeling and trying out that Kona beer. Thanks also for sharing some of your pictures, I enjoyed them a lot.
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Old Tuesday 8th June 2010, 05:43   #6
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There is the Kapunakea Preserve, but access is severely limited by the Nature Conservancy, if I remember correctly.
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Old Tuesday 8th June 2010, 20:23   #7
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No getting in there without some serious connections.
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