Good news for Hawaiian wetland birds

Hawaiian stilt, ae`o. Photo credit: USFWS.

Regular readers know that we try to report good news when we can.  This positive report caught my eye because I recently returned from an extended stay in the islands, where I had the opportunity to see these beautiful birds.

Conservation magazine reports on a recent study showing that populations of three endangered Hawaiian wetland birds have rebounded since the 1970s. (Readers with a subscription to Population Ecology can read the full study here.) Populations of the Hawaiian stilt, Hawaiian moorhen and Hawaiian coot have all increased significantly over the last three decades, and at least for the stilt and coot those increases are continuing. Population growth has been concentrated on Oahu and Kauai, where wetland protection efforts are most robust, with populations on Hawaii and Maui lagging.