Friday, June 17, 2016
Saffron Finch on the Big Island of Hawai'i
Western Tanager back home in California).
The Saffron Finches are popular cage birds, and that is the probable explanation for their existence in the Hawaiian Islands. They were first noted in the 1960s and were most likely escapees. They are common on the Big Island, and increasing in Oahu as well.
I encountered several of the finches at our first hotel on the day of our arrival, but it wasn't until several days later that we were exploring Lapakahi State Park on the northern coast that we saw one up close. Lapakahi preserves an ancient fishing village. We spied the finch "hiding" in a tree above a burial site ("hiding" is a strong term for such a colorful bird).
Later on we stopped in Kapa'au on the northern tip of the Big Island, and had another finch land nearby the group. I like the color contrast with the red paint on the roof.
Expect a lot more colorful birds in coming weeks. There were a lot of them out there!