Bishops oo

Moho bishopi

TAXONOMY

Acrulocercus bishopi Rothschild, 1893, Molokai Island, Hawaii. OTHER COMMON NAMES

English: Molokai oo; French: Moho de Bishop; German: Ohrbüschelmoho; Spanish: Oo Obispo.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

12 in (31 cm). Smoky black neck, back, and underparts with narrow white shaft lines on feathers. Wings and tail black. Tufts of golden feathers at ear coverts, undertail, and axillary.

DISTRIBUTION

Maui Island, formerly Molokai Island, Hawaiian Islands.

HABITAT

Dense rainforest in mountains.

BEHAVIOR

Inquisitive but timid and alert. Very loud owow, owow-ow call. The long graduated tail of male oos may have been used, along with the yellow feathers on wing, neck, and tail coverts, to display to the female.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Feed on nectar from lobelia flowers. Also take insects from upper canopy.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Not known, but possibly a hollow nester like the Kauai oo.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Critically Endangered, last seen on Molokai in 1904. Rediscovered on Maui in 1981. Probably wiped out on Molokai due to habitat loss and introduced malaria. Perhaps restricted to highest parts of Maui due to introduced malaria in the lowlands.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

Snared by native Hawaiians for its yellow plumes, which were used for ceremonial cloaks. ♦

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