Hawaii - Extinction is forever!
My recent trip to Hawaii was somewhat of a revelation. I was shocked to learn that Hawaii has the dubious honour as bird extinction capital of the world. Since Humans arrived it is estimated that 95 of the 142 species found nowhere else on the planet have become extinct. 33 of the remaining 44 species are listed as endangered! Ten of these species have not been seen for decades and likely to be extinct.
I spent a day in the Iiwi's known habitat searching for it but could not find a single bird.
The factors that have caused this are many.
Loss of Habitat (breeding and feeding)
Predation by invasive species (see my post on the mongoose)
Mosquito born avian diseases (malaria and pox) carried by introduced species.
It is a Tragedy that we have lost these species and our children and grand children will never see them except for stuffed samples in a museum!
We must do a better job here in Australia to protect the wildlife around us in our own communities.
Government has a poor track record of environmental management and our communities need to hold government to account wherever we see the need.