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12/21/08 - Pu'u Maka'ala NAR

Posted Monday 22nd December 2008 at 19:47 by bkrownd
I went back up from Volcano Village to Na Lua Mahoe to continue exploring this new area. The weather was wonderful. One thing I'm interested in is whether I can hear any 'akiapola'au in the large koa plantation up there. I didn't hear any Sunday after about 4 hours. I also will spend most of the upcoming five day weekend up there. There was very little bird diversity - 'apapane easily outnumbered everything else combined. There are a few 'amakihi which are rare along Stainback Highway, but...
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12/20/08 - Keauhou Ranch & Pu'u Maka'ala NAR

Posted Sunday 21st December 2008 at 05:51 by bkrownd
In the morning I went up to Keauhou Ranch with a teacher's workshop that was doing the Christmas Bird Count up there as an introduction to native forest ecology and conservation. We went a bit further up in the ranch than I've been in the past, directly West of Kulani Cone. The morning was misty and foggy, and the mist steadily diminished throughout the day. The ranch has extensive koa reforestation in the old paddocks and logged areas. (koa canopy, but still mostly pasture grasses underneath)...
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12/18/08 - Pu'u Maka'ala NAR

Posted Friday 19th December 2008 at 06:37 by bkrownd
Today I helped plant endangered clermontia peleana not far from Kulani Cone. I've been wanting to get to this area for many months, but the prison and some very hairy rainforest blocks access from Stainback Highway. Now that I know the trail from Volcano Village I'll be visting the area frequently to count birds and search for rare plants. The end of the "road" South from the Kulani boundary is lined with redwoods, which is quite a change in atmosphere when you step out of the dense...
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12/14/08 - Pu'u Maka'ala NAR

Posted Monday 15th December 2008 at 15:42 by bkrownd
A late start and a rainy morning. On the way up Stainback Highway I saw something in the other lane, which I thought was a rock. As I passed, I saw that the rock had legs! I stopped and found a very ruffled Japanese white-eye standing in the road, eyes closed, only identifiable by its eye-rings. I wondered how it was still standing in the middle of the road after two cars had just passed. It didn't even stir as I pulled up next to it in the loud car. I scooped it up, and it rustled and looked...
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12/13/08 - Ka'ohe and Kipuka 'Ainahou

Posted Sunday 14th December 2008 at 06:20 by bkrownd
Updated Sunday 14th December 2008 at 06:25 by bkrownd
After yesterday's rare thunderstorms, today's clear pre-dawn sky was quite a surprise. I got to enjoy watching meteors flash across the starry sky as I drove up to the Saddle, and the weather was very good for an outing. (and a sunburn)

We first visited Ka'ohe GMA on the western slope of Mauna Kea. Palila counts are less than two months away, so it's time for me to start getting used to hearing the palila again, as well as some other birds common on the west slope of Mauna Kea...
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