Birds Archives

The rare Ae’o – The Hawaiian stilts are breeding in ponds right beside the roadsides in Maui. The parents to this little one are very tame as they are used to passers-by. Parking on the roadside and using my car as hide I was simply wanting to photograph the two adults from a close vantage point, without them being nervous of my presence. I didn’t realise they were parents for quite a while – not until the little one materialised out of nowhere !  what a bonus!!!


Kestrel at Pulborough Brooks

I  was ready for her! A rare treat.. This Female Kestrel had spotted her lunch in the grass slopes right in front of where I was standing. She would hover about 30ft in front of me for about 15 seconds, almost at eye level, then fly off, then return and hover again until on about the 5th attempt she finally dove down at breakneck speed..  She caught her prey, and devoured it in the long grass.. almost out of sight!


img_6205_1It is very rare to see a Peregrine Falcon in Maui, Hawaii. But when all the birds at Kealia Ponds suddenly screamed alarm calls and took to the air I scanned the crowded airspace for the pair of laughing gulls I had seen earlier, suspecting it was them that had caused all the unusual commotion.. But they were also flying amongst the dozens of A’eo (rare Hawaiian Stilts) and behaving just as alarmed and panicked as all the spooked Golden Plovers, Sanderlings, Coots, White faced Ibis , Ducks and  Turn Stones that had also taken to the air at the same time..

The sky was full of birds, and right in amongst them all was this Peregrine Falcon. I didn’t think there were any Hawks on Maui, so it was a huge surprise to me to spot this Peregrine Falcon.  He then gained height and did what Peregrine Falcons do best – dive fast – too fast to photograph -(known to reach speeds of 180 mph in a dive), heading right down towards me and my lens. When he was about 30ft away from me he suddenly backed off, and watched me for a few moments, giving me plenty of time to hit the shutter on my camera, which fortunately had been set ready for the laughing gulls.

Spot the odd one out (hiding) in amongst the A’eo in the last photo –  safety in numbers – but not invisible !!!

Laughing Gulls - Kealia Ponds, MauiPeregrine Falcon, - Kealia Ponds, Maui  IMG_0375_wIMG_0374_Peregrine Falcon, - Kealia Ponds, MauiwIMG_0376_wIMG_0379_wIMG_0378_Peregrine Falcon, - Kealia Ponds, Maui Peregrine Falcon, - Kealia Ponds, Maui IMG_0380_wIMG_0382_wIMG_0384_wIMG_0385_Peregrine Falcon, - Kealia Ponds, Maui wIMG_0386_wIMG_0388_wAeo - Hawaiian Stilts and Ibis - Maui IMG_0389_w

The A’eo is an endangered bird on the Hawaiian islands. but can be seen in large numbers at Kealia Ponds in Kihei, on Maui. The five year average count of these Hawaiian stilts across the Hawaiin islands is currently 3000 so they are protected and their habitats are managed to suit their breeding and feeding.  Visiting the new center can be very exiting at this time of year, they are all very busy in the run up to their nesting season..

Pick and view all images in one of my Bird Galleries (from Maui, Spain, UK, Yellowstone)

A'eo (The rare Hawaiian stilt) - at Kealia Ponds - busy defending their nesting territories-  © Anita Harris -  IMG_0498 IMG_0347 IMG_0408 IMG_0444 IMG_0472 IMG_0467

Maui spotted doves and dogs love the camera.

This spotted dove was posing on a wall of one of the many single lane bridges on the road to Hana, on Maui’s North Shore. They are very common on Maui, along with the smaller zebra doves. Often seen feeding on the roads causing approaching traffic to slow down because they are pretty slow in flying off .

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