View Full Version : I'iwi and noddies on Maui?

Tuesday 15th March 2011, 05:02
I'm off to Maui later this month, and was wondering if anyone had any birding advice. I'll be staying in West Maui, but plan on heading up to Haleakala for at least one day, as well as snorkeling off of Lanai. The birds I'm really looking to see are the I'iwi, and the brown and/or black noddy. Does anyone have any suggestions for where to look for these birds, and if anyone recommends any guided tours?

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Jim M.
Tuesday 15th March 2011, 06:46
Absent local help, eBird gives you some good ideas. Click on the species names, then zoom in on the maps and click on individual balloons to get more info.



Thursday 17th March 2011, 06:31
I have had great luck in seeing I'iwi at Hosmer Grove up at Haleakala. It's best to look for them in the morning before the heat of the day sets in. There's a short trail that leads to a bench and railing that overlooks a small gulley. This is just one of several spots along the trail that I've seen them. Here's an image that I made from that spot. (http://www.pbase.com/hawaiianonline/image/107442063) If you look through the my birding gallery (linked below), there are other I'iwi images made along the trail at Hosmer grove. Not sure about the Noddies. Good Luck!

EDIT: Just found a reference to them in my copy of "A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Hawaii", and it said that the Black Noddy aka Hawaiian Noddy or Noio can be seen at Waianapanapa State Park just to the west of Hana Maui. It didn't really say anything about the Brown Noddy on Maui, but did note that the best places to see them are on Oahu and Kauai.

Friday 18th March 2011, 18:52
Check whether Maui Forest Birds Recovery Project will be leading any tours into Waikamoi. These would be vastly more satisfying than the unreliable tourist-family oriented (loud groups!) national park tours. www.mauiforestbirds.org Tip/donate liberally, since they're always looking for funding and work for peanuts.

The longer boardwalk tour at Waikamoi is about the only place on Maui where the public can see a real native forest, sad to say. ("Hosmer's grove" is an artificial conifer/eucalyptus plantation) The shorter gulch tour doesn't get into the native forest, and has less chance of seeing the endangered birds.

The native subalpine scrub between the "Hosmer's grove" area and Halemau'u Trail is also very nice. Birds are seasonal in that habitat.

I do the reviewing for eBird in Hawai'i, and would comment that the map for sea birds such as noddies may be a bit inaccurate since users are free to plonk them down whereever they like, and unfortunately many people place birds inaccurately in eBird. I only clean up the native forest birds, which are what I know well. Places with large concentrations of observations are probably good. I'd check books for suggested locations, such as those by H.D. Pratt. There is also this site: http://www.birdinghawaii.co.uk/Annotatedlist2.htm#BLACK%20NODDY

One interesting thing I did during surveys on Maui is when we went up to the "crater" rim after dark, and sat on the edge listening to the petrels etc fly in at night. They come in sometime after dark, and leave sometime before dawn. Some times of year they are vocalizing, but in September all we heard was "woooosh" as they flew by. One of them made a crash landing into a bush near one of us. I can't remember the exact spot we parked and walked to the edge - it was fairly high up, but not at the top. People do fall off the edge and die, so choose wisely. Also, don't go near any of the nesting burrows - there are many scattered around near the edge - and don't step on any plants. You'd have to investigate the exact time to go and scout out a good place during daylight.

Saturday 19th March 2011, 00:07
Thanks to both of you for very helpful advice. We're definitely going to do at least a day in Haleakala, so Hosmer's grove is definitely on our to-do list!

Thursday 24th March 2011, 07:07
Here's another site you might try.