The Beautiful Endangered Palila

Endangered Birds and Animals

The palila (Loxioides bailleui) is a critically endangered finch-billed species of Hawaiian honeycreeper. It has a golden-yellow head and breast, with a light belly, gray back, and greenish wings and tail. The bird has a close ecological relationship with the māmane tree, and became endangered due to destruction of the trees and accompanying dry forests.

Endangered Birds and Animals
Photo Credit: abcbirds.org

The palila has a yellow head and breast, with white to light gray plumage ventrally, medium gray plumage dorsally, and olive-green wings and tail. The bird also has a heavy dark bill with swollen sides, a brown iris, and dark feet with yellowish soles. The palila is one of the largest living Hawaiian honeycreepers, measuring around 6–7.5 inches.

Endangered Birds and Animals
Phot Credit: abcbirds.org

There is some sexual dimorphism. Males tend to have brighter colors overall, as well as clear-cut black lores. The corresponding area contrasts less with the dirty-yellow heads in the marginally smaller females.

The bird's song is inconspicuous, containing whistling, warbling and trilling notes. The call is characteristic, however, being a clear, bell-like whistle, chee-clee-o or te-cleet. This is loudly communicated between birds advertising food during the morning and evening, and according to native informants, it is given most frequently during the day as rain approaches.

Reactions: