Hawaiian Ecosystems: Dr. Sam 'Ohukani 'ōhi'a Gon III

so I’m Sam ohoo Kaneohe are gone and I wanted to start by acknowledging my training in duel Worlds I’m a Western trained conservation biologists I’ve earned my bachelor’s and my master’s degrees in zoology and my PhD in ethology which is the study of animal behavior the latter two degrees from the University of California Davis and this is the Hawaiian animal that gave me my PhD I studied the behavior ecology and evolution of the Hawaiian happy face spider and at the same time its role in Native Hawaiian forests and in my work as a conservation biologist with the Nature Conservancy I’ve seen firsthand maybe more Native Hawaiian plants and animals than most Konopka City and a few lifetimes and I make it my duty to these Native Hawaiian species to know their names and their status on all of the islands but I almighty gave Hawaii Hawaii my traditional knowledge and intuition I’m too many Kumu but the one who i sat with for the last dozen years and from whom I learned all the and protocol and who put me through the unique II who LFO to emerge as a practitioner of Olien protocol Kahuna Holliday oh that one is Kumu john mccain on oahu yo Kalani no kamehameha called the lake shown here leaving us in chance for Queen Liliuokalani birthday at Iolani Palace a few years back equality is the title of my presentation it means roughly Hawaii the verdant back and it’s one of the descriptive eponyms were for hawaii the pine or the high island archipelago but wooly is a rich where devotes the dark-green of dense forests or the dark-blue of deep ocean depths or the pregnant heavy darkness of rain clouds it implies a deepness not only a color but of time and of spirit this kind of depth is not to be found in a small place or a low place but in a large place where the islands are so massive now if you throw shadows into the sky to frame the rising moon or two deflect hurricanes or to intercept and gather moisture from the world’s winds and with that moisture generate life unlike anywhere else in the world so let’s enter now into that living and if I could it would be my great pleasure to take you to see the many ecosystems that I’ve had a chance to experience firsthand in my conservation career in Hawaii but since I can’t do that I can do the next best thing and offer you a virtual tour of the highlights of the living ecosystems of Hawaii the native plants animals and ecosystems of Hawaii form a unique biogeographic province rich enough to include representatives of all of the world’s biomes except for tundra this island ecoregions history of change though has taken it through a period of a petition by an island people who developed a culture as rich and unique as their natural setting a setting that enabled Hawaiian culture to flourish as one of the pinnacles in Polynesian societies excelling and voyaging in fed their work in fishing and fish ponds household amenities cup of fabrics and crafts of all kinds and generating an equally rich cultural system and the pre-contact society that developed within it 1,500 years of habitation contributed to a course of ecosystem changes that greatly accelerated after Western contact and today culminate in huge challenges to native species and ecosystems and those charged to protect and manage them but here are the main Hawaiian Islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean the Hawaiian Islands are most isolated high islands on earth with 2,500 miles or more separating Hawaii from the surrounding continents and without the help of people only those animals who could

brave a transoceanic voyage by air or waves were among the colonizers but once arrived and successfully colonize here they developed into species like none other on the planet core adapted and balanced as the curved build of the EEV is a match for the tubular flowers of the collie the native lobelia so that while the EEV receives a nectar meal from the flower the plan anthers deposit Pollan precisely on its head about 90% of the roughly 1,200 species of native Hawaiian vascular plants are entirely restricted to the Hawaiian Islands some like the silver sword of Haleakala are found only on a single Island a single Mountain a single region of that mountain and the proliferation of bird species such as these hawaiian honeycreepers from a single ancestor but the celebrated finches of the Galapagos de shame terrestrial Hawaiian ecosystems have been called systems of birds and invertebrates and indeed aside from the need of bath the major animal components were a few hundred bird species and over 10,000 endemic species of insects and other invertebrates here’s a spectacular example a gigantic picture winged Hawaiian pumice fly well known genus Drosophila one of over 800 Hawaiian species of Drosophila more species of Drosophila than for any other single known place on earth and Europe by comparison that you didn’t even know this is a miserable little lab Josef Allah the standard in genetic research marine endemism although much lower by terrestrial standards is extremely high compared to other global marine regions fishes are the marine analogues of birds and for fishes nearly a quarter of the species found in the Hawaiian waters are only found in Hawaiian waters now this level of endemism is among the highest in the marine world in addition a recent study found that over 50% of the reef fish individuals observed during daytime surveys are endemic species this very large proportion of endemic fish observed suggested they play important ecological roles in Hawaiian marine ecosystems far higher than their percentage alone of 24 percent might might indicate hawaiian marine invertebrate endemism is even higher with about a third of known species on average entirely restricted to Hawaiian waters the level of uniqueness varies by group with different percentages among the Hawaiian sponges the hard corals the xoan the the sea cucumbers the sea urchins little stars other sea stars for example for example this extremely high endemism on land and sea coupled with huge ecological amplitude in the hawaiian archipelago distinguishes that as a world by a geographic province there’s a very wide range of ecosystems and habitat conditions in the Hawaiian island chain topography for example ranges from utterly roaded youthful lava landscapes too young for any cultures or valleys as on the still active Manalo volcano on the island of hawaii to raise your bat ridges created as the end product of millions of years of erosion has shown by the five plus million year old cliffs of nepali on the island of hawaii from lands that were created just this morning a barren and devoid of life to climax for us supporting thousands of species from subalpine cinder lands as dry as any of the world’s deserts to arguably the wettest spot on earth that Waialeale on hawaii from coastal dunes at sea level to snow-capped volcanic summits just shy of fourteen thousand feet on Mauna Kea so let’s begin our tour of Hawaiian ecosystems from coast to summit and then down the streams of the sea the coastlines of Hawaii are generally sunny and dry with dunes of coral sands or rough lava cliffs creating a challenging landscape but natives dwarf shrublands built of plants such as Athena Hina and they make big heliotropes stabilize and close the dunes just as the parka protected the baby in one square meter of rich coastal vegetation can be found via via oh hello Kai aqua de khuda ke kanaka no grass and Hina Hina all coexisting among the coral rubble near Ely oh boy on Molokai one very special course of forest type is found only on the island called whoo hello of the secrets of malacca ii a stand of native coastal low loop arms occupies the top of the island and rats have all but eliminated it from the sea cliffs we’re probably also once dominated

forbes was a botanist visiting Hawaii in the 1800s and he documented Hawaiians climbing the hundred foot passiveness of hue law then holding on to the large fan like fronds of the low Lu palms leaping off the top and gliding very steeply into the churning ocean just for fun and use a view from within the lowly forest at the top of oil or rock to give you a feel just in case you want to try that someday another coastal forest type of great significance is Halle forests found on all of the main islands now pockets a typical understory plant over here and lauhala of course is the plating material of choice creating fine Maps used in ancient Hawaii as well as in homes today of course plants are only one element of coastal ecosystems there are many animals that call the coasts home such as the Hawaiian monk seal called yokai dog of the sea an alternate name is Elio hallo ich awawa is translated in the Hawaiian dictionary as dog that runs in the rough seas but but the word Wawa means glutinous like jell-o and if you’ve ever watched the monk sea or move across the sand you can see why I think the name should be translated as dog that runs in a kind of way sandy beaches are also the required nesting sites procedural sectors for new who return to very specific sites to dig their nests and lay their eggs such animals are revered by many Hawaiian families as Alma who our ancestors sea birds in the ancient past sea bird nesting colonies were not relegated to offshore islands but extensively covered the main islands their contribution to the nutrient cycle a pre-human vegetated ecosystems must have been really significant their significance in Hawaiian culture can be seen in the banner of Villanova and god of the winter wet season and the Makahiki a time of peace and athletic games many of the pelagic sea birds return to the Islands to nest during these times and so we’re woven into the major symbol of the season one unusual coastal system from between land and sea is anchialine pools and these are brackish waters that fluctuate with the tide I’m near but separated from the sea and in fact that’s what the word anti-alien means Enki nearby and Allah knows from the salty sea I’m here endemic red shrimp Oh quite Ola are the major life-forms among the other invertebrates and algae that thrive best in a fish free environment when they emerge at high tide from rock crevices they can become so numerous as to turn waters blood-red and reveal hidden murders as in the story of Papua Alya at Vienna panel on Maui moving away from the coast and uphill a bit in a trade when setting the leeward lowland flanks are usually dry yet such areas receiving less than 10 inches of rainfall a year may lie only five miles from reinforce that summits receiving over 200 inches of annual rainfall grasslands shrublands and summer deciduous forests of native trees such as these really really were widespread in the dry lowlands of ancient Hawaii there’s a saying who really nanaka mono when the really really blooms the shark’s bite and indeed the late summer bloom are really really the precedes the coming of the holy lore wet season corresponds with the annual meeting aggregation of some sharks forming the ranks of fins called la langue echolalia other trees such as oh hey Mekhi share an open woodland with really really on sun-baked lava Plains and an alternate Hawaiian name for the og Makai is or who indicating the light strong branches were used to make stilts which I call cuckoo Lu IO used in special ceremonial dances to lift the performers above the audience indeed the Hawaiians still is also called cuckoo Lu IO and is tied by name to this lowland tree on geologically young islands lava flows support pioneer lowland dry forests dominated by OHIP ally despite almost no soil development there are red blossoms open and they land the lava flats of kuru and Puna bright color so that lohiau offered the observation or Punahou like a Papa you like papa Poonam Kunis the land of the river who are on the lava flaps so the plains of reddened by the red but eleggua blossoms of Puna and where it’s too dry for trees mixed shrublands of Hardy species that is an ally II and Pookie Ave covered the land the hardiness of the IDE is celebrated in metaphor the people of Kabul say here Ally Akuma can do I owe him Akane he

know I’m an ally standing in the wind and no force can take me down he would low land such as keep ahoy-hoy and corner support extensive pili grasslands which provided the preferred roof thatching for hawaiian structures lowland dry forms of cocoa on Niki’s sap to you for at a softer texture to the rough landscape near Kaena point on Oahu dwarf shrub lands such as this one of you of Alima form a colorful carpet in the many coastal and lowland areas in Hawaii here on the windswept lava coast of hello papa a Molokai and the delicate flowers of the Alima of painstakingly strung into one of the most highly prized lay a Hawaii the bright flags of color of the Ojai joined the Alima and they grow from sea level to about 500 feet pollinated by native bees the lowlands were also where the majority of iliahi the sand over gross it’s one of the many tree species that can be found in the diverse Hawaiian lowland Messick forest in fact there are more species of native trees found in lowland dry and music forests than in wet for us the Hawaiian puppy called poo a color that is for any flower because of the sharp spines at the tips of its leaves thrives in some of the most dry and desolate areas near sea level what you’ve all been ZZZ the visiting partners for the 1800’s found the Hawaiian woman manipulating the flowers of the native poppy and when he asked what she was doing she informed that by taking the air whoo the pollen of one flower to another he would increase the number of edible seeds and this is a glimpse of the intimacy of the empirical science of Hawaiians in their living landscape the bright yellow flower of the Hawaiian cotton the Mahalo mark some of the driest native shrub lands just above the coast on Oahu Molokai alanna.holloway Maru means green of course and indeed a big green traditional guy is derived from this plant but you must know which part of the plant produces the color anybody know what time yes he said the flower it’s not the leaf of the morrow the leaf makes a nice orange orange red that I the pale the Hawaiian owl is another important Tama who are too many Hawaiians it’s a bird of prey that thrives in the drier lowlands my Kumu jankura Mahina Narvik comes the poor among his alma hua although the name a goose is now relegated to marginal subalpine habitats on Hawaii and Maui it’s prehistoric habitat was the warmer lowlands place names such as cooling in air in the lowlands of Maui attest to the ancient distribution introduced predators such as dogs cats and Mongoose have greatly narrowed their range the fossil record indicates that a giant flightless goose was once the formidable presence in the lowland forests of Hawaii the el apoyo is an ideal signature bird of the lowland music forest greeting human visitors with great curiosity such words were often worked into stories that taught moral or practical lessons such as the story of an LMAO that wanted to start a war between birds and humans because they had been hurt by a man after he attacked a hole in his waters board when the birds found out that the Ella paya was the one at fault they lost sympathy over his injury and he righted him with their squats until he finally had to admit that he was the troublemaker he is perhaps the most common native forest bird remaining in our lowland Messick for us it’s calls and songs have probably been part of the Hawaiian consciousness for a thousand years over the call of the our Maki he is not a very sweet one indeed it’s a fuzzy squeak of a call that is not the most pleasant to hear which perhaps explains why there’s a Hawaiian after ISM unlucky Lala fala quest I’m a hehe referring to someone with a negative and criticising dispositions the horn that is called the name evokes a pepper a sale as on a canoe considering the traditional sale of averaging canoe the membrane spread between the wings of a bat are very much like Full Sail spread from the canoe masts and spars leaving the lowlands and moving up into the montane rain forests of ancient Hawaii lush moss covered branches rise to close canopies and protect from delicate ferns shrubs and plants beneath these wet systems dominated as they do today on the wet windward flanks of the higher islands above 3,000 feet elevation were cloud or rain and rain as a daily occurrence in

lowland and Messick and dry forestry diversity is highest but in a montane workforce overall plant diversity is highest with many hundreds of species of herbs shrubs vines and ferns from this loss lush mix of giant of the upper low billions and ferns lines the wet cultures running through the montane forests of East Maui our only native carnivorous plants is a delicate Sunview that grows in the montien bogs of the island of hawaii the Hawaiian Mickey na low means fly sucker an indication that Hawaiians observed and appreciated its insect eating nature the rich red fruit of the Alcala the Hawaiian raspberry catches the eye but what escapes notice is the forints many Hawaiian plants have lost defenses through millennia of evolution in the system lock lacking large mammalian herbivores the fruit we’re not only nutritious but provided a beautiful pink dye which was used to color copper and things back to the plants name Allah being the word for pink here’s a delicate suit Andra aptly called by Hawaiians Hockeyville a broken easily they can persist only and pristine pink free wet for us a habitat only rarely encountered today the montane forests were considered wha-wha-wha by ancient hawaiians the realm of the gods and chants describe the native suit andrás that mark this realm and and that was not often visited by by humans the Wakulla was part of a fundamental dichotomy in the hawaiian universe while Kanaka was the realm of humans typically at lower elevations where coastal and lowland resources were plentiful and human beings thrive the uplands were the Wawa kueh were that which grew did not so by human effort but via the gods and that realm was profoundly sacred and considered perilous for human incursion so only small parties led by specialists with knowledge of the forests and its resources could enter the Wawa who are and only with purposeful positive intent and after rigorous ceremonial protocols and preparations on steep cliffs at the heads of wall and walls of valleys are rich mix of ferns and shrubs hold erosion and chat and provide for an essential watershed for human agriculture below that the Wawa Kula was considered a sacred source of rain and water is an indication of the knowledge of such areas needed to be protected to ensure a continuity of life vines of climbed the trunks of wet forest trees and offer clusters of fruit for birds such as the owl the tough flexible aerial roots provided the woven framework for sturdy feathered helmets la magia de worn by Chiefs red oh hello berries provided food for Nene oh ma Oh thrush and other birds foraging through the openings in wet forests and for Hawaiians the berries are secret to Pele Akua volcanism and oh hello is plentiful around the active volcanic crater of Kilauea but oh he uh Nagoya tree is the dominant species in Hawaiian wet forests of all islands and adaptable and extremely variable species in flower color leaf shape of stature etc its nectar rich flowers provide the mainstay for hawaiian honeycreepers such as the sap upon a though he are as dominant tree of the whoie kueh the secret of plan realm was considered a physical manifestation of the major Hawaiian God kou a large Ohia tree possessed such high mana that a tree harvested ceremonially destined to be carved into an image of GU would demand the human sacrifice Lihua the blossom of the Hawiye tree typically crimson red was also the term used for the first warrior to fall in battle or a standout expert in any practice the Maui parrot bill is actually a honey creeper with the bill specialized for snapping through twigs in search of grubs the bill is so strong that it’s not through thick strong twigs easily an order ornithologist friend of mine still bear scars from one of these very rare and endangered birds she was studying them in people who live only on Maui and had caught one in a mist net she was carefully measuring it using heavy leather gloves to protect your fingers when she saw it was 4 o’clock that’s Radio check-in time she had to do the radio check because if you fail to check in a rescue party is said to find you so she was trying to finish her measurements with the parrot bill in one hand and work the radio in the other hand and found that she couldn’t press the radio buttons with the heavy gloves on and so she took off one of the gloves with with one of the gloves and at that moment her bare fingers exposed the power bill reached over and bit her finger to the bone her radio call her radio was on at that

moment and I never heard such language from an ornithologist before or since but today she shows the bishops car probably she says see this Maui parrot bill people who loo 1981 the EEV is one of the scarlet honey peepers whose brilliant feathers were worked into symbols of highest rank evey provided the red feathers while the Mamo and/or provided both yellow and black the brilliant colors of forest birds directly linked the chiefly on the E Class with the wah-wah who the realm of the gods the Hawaiian happy face spider shares the brilliant colors of the ah hoola K and spends its entire life under the protective cover of a sturdy leaf on a shrub in the understory of Native Hawaiian for us it’s a little hard to imagine that this kind of coloration might serve as camouflage but the Sun light that shines relief renders a yellow body transparent making it nearly invisible to birds or kamehameha butterfly is one of only two native butterflies in the Hawaiian fauna it’s caterpillars feed on Mamaki shrubs that grow along the riverbanks in Hawaiian wet forests and while we’re in the subject anybody know our very native Hawaiian butterfly ok good some people will do its Blackburn’s butterfly a little green live scene that favors koa and our de so now you know you can say I know 100 percent of the native butterfly fauna of the Hawaiian Islands pukahi be Hawaiian tree snails feed on algae and molds that grow on the leaves of wet forest plants this denizen of the wha-wha-wha was also considered supernatural and assert to sing in a whistling voice at night – male hammerhead in Hawaiian flies battle for a meeting territory and a branch of an Olaf a tree above 6000 feet we pass from the Montaigne zone and into the sub alpine and Alpine ecosystems the tropical inversion layer limits the formation of clouds and the lush montane wet forest below the cloud layer contrasts strongly with a dry sparse and barren mountaintops above them again separated from moisture said above the average cloud tops the subalpine zone mimics a dry lowland zone and includes many of the same plant species in these highest zones can be extremely hot by day without the protection of clouds and at night temperatures can plunge well at below freezing only the most powerful storms bring rain and snow to the Alpine zones otherwise desert life but once the challenges of higher elevation environments are dealt with adapted species are free to thrive and proliferate leading to some spectacular results such as the iana here not Hawaiian snow resorts hawaiian honeycreepers have even here from the niche the pali law is a severe the preparing zones about my mom on a forest for its survival high above the vegetation limits is a snowy Alpine zone seemingly devoid of living things this is the realm of polio with the goddess of snows who lives on the highest mountain in the archipelago Mauna Kea which can mean white mountain but in deeper meaning alludes to the sky father of Hawaiian creation waka I can live in the snowy barren wilderness the vayhue bug named for its habitat on the highest peak of Bona Kea is flightless and dark to absorb the warmth of the Sun and the icy deserts ending the riddle is this what does the vacuum bug eat and the answer is it eats frozen food that’s true strong trade winds blow in six up from the rich forest below and as they freeze and die on the snow patches or amidst the cinders and boulders the wake you bug emerged to feed on this a Lachlan SEO lien food source yo lien means on the way ends right a Lachlan s means means from somewhere else I had the pleasure to be in a cubby right next to a Greek student when I was in grad school and I had written a paper on a lock – unalaq honest ecological relationships and I had him read the draft of the thing and he contacted me he goes do you know what this word means and I said I’m from somewhere else and he goes oh that’s right because in Greece they used a lock on us to mean from out of town like food as challenging as the environment of the Alpine zone is it’s clear that this zone was important to Hawaiians the standing

stones of shrines rise far above the moisture and warmth of the lowlands and what would draw people to this barren ecosystem near the shrine is an area of unusual stones fresh looking blue gray surfaces contrasts against the background of weathered Brown a closer look reveals a roughly rectangular block atop the flakes a human form that will be worked further into the main carving tool in Hawaii a Pocky orad’s so this is the resource that drew Hawaiians into the frigid mountaintop the highest quality source of answers and perhaps all of the Pacific generations of Kahuna Kakui adds making specialists need pilgrimages to the sacred site to gather and work the stone tool that in turn was essential for building the infrastructure of Hawaiian lei the snows of Mauna Kea also represent the highest waters of the island water that flow from the mountaintops to the sea the highest liquid water and alpine lake is to be found in y-yo near the summit of Mauna Kea when Yahoo is a storied entrance to millou the Hawaiian realm that follows moral life like all significant waters why always considered the home of one of the more water related Guardian deities usually female anybody know the name of the mo of what Yahoo okay I won’t give the answer you guys got to look it up okay running tio gets more in on their running through the different zones of the Hawaiian landscape to the sea or freshwater streams that provide habitat for endemic Hawaiian freshwater species oppai kala all day for example or endemic Hawaiian streams shrimp whose ancestors lived in the surrounding sea and and kala mai but whenever I see a nope I can’t help but think how nicely it would go with Julio okay native goby such as a llama or move from marine habitats into Hawaiian streams they still send their eggs downstream which hatch and undergo larval transformations and development as marine plankton before returning to streams to mature the Alamo was considered a physical manifestation of the Hawaiian mo deities of pools and lakes and so it’s not considered a food fish similarly similarly our stream Nurik snail he-ey lays eggs and stream boulders but the snail hatchlings are washed down to the sea and need to call slowly back upstream as they grow regarded as a tasty delicacy the hehe way is gathered by night when they emerge and forage and large submerged stream boulders we wouldn’t dare gather hee hee way on a stormy night when the stream might rise and wash away in the darkness to drown so a night that is just right for gathering here is called just that hippo hee hee way a night for gathering VG viacom starry night when the hee hee yr emerged and plentiful on the stream boulders and the streams are running clear and no danger of flood of flash floods so the face that poor hee hee way symbolizes any endeavor conducted under optimum conditions similar to the same strike while the iron is hot many species of delicate Hawaiian damselflies Pina Ulla graced the streams of different islands their young or aquatic predators while as adults they catch small airborne insects in wet forests boys should notice of the pee now and there is a hey of an ancient temple site on the island of Kauai a name for this native indicating how the elements of the natural world might receive great significance and be reflected in named starry song and even large religious infrastructure just recently I was taken by fellow practitioner of kawaii to the P now hey yo se where I found that it’s associated with freshwater Springs that still run and I thought to myself ah hey kawaii a copy now that is where the flowing water got P now are flying streams and wetlands provide habitat for water birds such as the Hawaiian clue alike okay oh and the Hawaiian colo amaldi’ another waterbird allah-allah figures prominently in Hawaiian culture is the holder of the secret of fire-making the demigod Maui rested that secret from the ally and brought fire-making to people and the Alliance fiery markings on head and legs attest to the bird’s connection to the secret of fire the largest dreams eventually reached to see connecting the terrestrial realm with that of the marine and here the large stream of white people tumbles into the ocean of North Kohala bringing nutrients from the land on islands of volcanic origin much of the coastline is rocky providing a very complex habitat for variety of creatures the many small spaces are extremely important refuge and nursery grounds for juvenile fish and even after

millennia of erosion on the older islands the boulder dominated rocky shallows are still home for a special set of living things these include I’m a crab often volcanic black to match the boulders or PE or our native limpet a much sought-after delicacy a large number of seaweeds Limu that provide much of the vitamin content of the ancient hawaiians aiya and which was a major food source for both Opihi and how okay sea urchin a species whose shape and strong to be all that fast against the roughest waves with the currents create large expanses of sandy bottom are different a completely different set of species find the home beds of seagrass not a seaweed but a true flowering plant provide forage for for new the sea turtles and the sandy bottoms are filled with crustaceans and other small invertebrates that are felt out by the kubu the goat fish I’m so called because of the whiskers below its skin used to feel for vibrations of its prey and the sand a milk fish often swarms in large numbers in this habitat and their lips silvery color disappears against the bright sandy background and Oreo a born fish is another bottom feeder that marks the near shore sandy ecosystems people often picture a rich coral reef and imagining Hawaiian marine ecosystems and indeed the reefs of Hawaii are a dynamic and complex habitat for many species our reefs are created in large part by the gradual building of calcium carbonate skeletons of billions of individual coral animals olives now these are the first living things mentioned in the kugel before the Hawaiian chant of creation and coral is also the word used for a sacred shrine indeed pieces of Sun bleached coral punctuate the platforms of many Hawaiians shrines and temples on and in Hawaiian reefs live such creatures as Punahou slate-pencil action many species are brightly colored nudibranch sea slugs right because they’re so often poisonous feeding on toxic sponges as well as stinging sea anemones and incorporating the new molasses and poisons into their own defensive organs in the record book as the longest fish name in the world with a long joining snap its new cool new COO boy and that it uses to scout individual coral polyps the no less famous humuhumunukunukuapua’a looking and sounding like a pig ring grunting in the sea indeed the supernatural demigod come up whaaa is able to take the form of the humuhumunukunukuapua’a and swim between islands and his storied exploits and finally Pookie the moray eel wending through the endless crevasses of the reef hunting for small fish and in Hawaiian stories its face can be seen in the husk coconut the pelagic open ocean waters are where the largest predators live the open ocean includes is also the migratory path for humpback whales the Kohala the fastest predators the ahi tunas are bullet shaped and all muscle allowing them to to chase down the fastest prey and catch them even when they leap from the water so you notice the Malolo caught in midair by that guy other predators include Aloha the Jax and night our spinner dolphins dolphins can create bubble nets a concentrate small fish into dense swirling spheres these are then attacked by the Dolphins tunas and even seabirds diving in from above to take their pick there’s no wonder that these hunting areas are often marked overhead by the seabirds that they attract plankton plankton feeders such as hee hee Manu the eagle rays continually cruised the water column monk seals usually thought of as surface or shallow water creatures are now known to dive as deep as a thousand feet below the surface to feed on prey and the pelagic bottom a deep lightless zone and there are other deep lightless zones of a different kind in Hawaii equally underground subterranean ecosystems lie under all-weather coastal lava plain montane wet forests or alpine desert there are even Ankiel in caves and marine caves the volcanic foundation of the islands is rich in caves lava tubes formed in pahoehoe lava flows and here a skylight in the roof of the cave sends light into an otherwise lightless world and the roots of all heat are growing above reach down for moisture these roots form the basis were surprising Hawaiian cave ecosystem they bring nutrients from the sunlit surface into an otherwise sterile environment where eyeless nearly pigment less cave crickets wander through the route map feeding on decomposing plant matter now

they have close relatives that live in the forest above indicating the course of evolution an adaptive invasion of a new niche where a light was no longer important the cave crickets may have escaped their original predators such as birds but some predators follow them this spider belongs to a group sometimes called the big iron hunting spiders but here they become small eyed big eyed hunting spiders on Kauai where the cave systems have had the longest time to evolve the evolution has culminated in a no I big ion hunting spider there’s an amazingly bizarre looks kinda like that I had to photoshop out the eyes of that guy yeah of course kids provided shelter burial sites hidden water sources stable conditions for storage and other important resources to Hawaiians and are considered sacred so these were the native ecosystems of ancient Hawaii nearly 250 different kinds of natural communities from oceans the Alpine summit including vegetated aquatic marine and subterranean ecosystems in our times we’ve seen make changes it easy to these ecosystems and great challenges to their conservation on the Hawaii much of the native ecosystem area has actually still remained with us but the pink zones show where human influence has replaced the Hawaiian native plant and animal communities the situation is much more severe on the island of Oahu where nearly everything below 2,000 feet has been replaced by development or non-native ecosystems the phenomenon of vegetation change in Hawaii is an intriguing one and those of us who know it well sometimes wonder what the consequences might have been if we could go back at key points in history to prevent certain crucial events but games like that can can be kind of frustrating and fruitless unless we apply that I’m moving forward toward an interaction between people and their living surroundings that recaptures the intimacy and the appreciation that inspires stewardship and sustainability after all the unique plants and animals of the Hawaiian ecoregion valued greatly by the evolutionary biologists worldwide are also representatives of irreplaceable living treasures that form the foundation of human Hawaiian culture so I hope this brief tour of wine ecosystems leaves you with the clearer appreciation of Hawaii quality Hawaii of the deep green living landscape and archipelago of wonders so Mahalo for your kind attention