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Olomao Myadestes lanaiensis
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The last well-documented sighting of this species was in 1994 (Clement and Hathway 2000), with an unconfirmed report in 1988, and no subsequent records despite further surveys in most of the historical range in Kamako'u-Pelekunu. It may have been driven extinct by disease spread by introduced mosquitoes, and as a result of habitat destruction. However, it cannot yet be presumed to be Extinct because the remote Oloku'i Plateau has not been resurveyed recently and could conceivably still harbour some birds. Any remaining population is likely to be tiny, and for these reasons it is treated as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct).

Taxonomic source(s)
AOU. 1998. Check-list of North American birds. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.
Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.

18 cm. Small, drab thrush. Brown above, pale grey below, darkest on throat. Pale buff undertail-coverts. Similar spp. Introduced Melodious Laughingthrush Garrulax canorus brighter cinnamon-brown with yellow bill. Introduced Japanese Bush-warbler Cettia diphone much smaller and slimmer with noticeable pale eyebrow. Voice Song a halting, thrush-like melody. Call a cat-like rasp.

Distribution and population
Myadestes lanaiensis is endemic to the central Hawaiian Islands, U.S.A., where it is (or was) known from Maui, Lana'i and Moloka'i. . The nominate subspecies of Lana'i was last seen in 1933 and is now extinct. The race rutha of Moloka'i and Maui is also likely to be extinct (Clement and Hathway 2000). It had been extirpated from Maui before ornithologists arrived, but possibly survived until the mid-19th century (J. Lepson in litt. 1999). Most of the historical range on Moloka'i in Kamako'u-Pelekunu has been resurveyed and the species has probably been extirpated from that area (DOFAW and PIERC 1995, Reynolds and Snetsinger 2001 unpubl. data); the last well-documented record from Moloka'i was in 1994 (Clement and Hathway 2000).  However, it cannot yet be presumed to be Extinct because the remote Oloku'i Plateau has not been resurveyed recently and could conceivably still harbour some birds. Any remaining population is likely to be tiny.

Population justification
Any remaining population is assumed to be tiny (numbering fewer than 50 individuals and mature individuals), with no records (confirmed or otherwise) since 1994.

Trend justification
The population trend is unknown as the last well-documented sighting of this species took place in 1980.

It is a shy and retiring bird of the montane forest canopy, although in the late 1800s it was reported as ubiquitous in forests from the lowlands to the higher elevations on Moloka'i and Lana'i (Scott et al. 1986, Wakelee and Fancy 1999). Like its congeners, it is primarily frugivorous (Wakelee and Fancy 1999, K. Wakelee in litt. 1999).

This species's drastic decline is probably attributable to the introduction of disease-carrying mosquitoes and habitat destruction. Mosquitoes were, until recently, restricted to the lowlands, but have followed the penetration of feral pigs into remote native rainforests over the last 25 years (Pratt 1994), and Moloka'i's uplands are probably too small to provide disease-free refugia. Pigs also modify native forests as they carry alien weeds to new areas and their rooting destroys the shrub layer (Pratt 1994), and introduced axis deer Axis axis are an additional problem (Loope and Medeiros 1995).

Conservation Actions Underway
The Kamakou Preserve and neighbouring land have been partially fenced and control programmes exist for feral ungulates (H. Baker and P. Baker in litt. 1999). The Oloku'i Natural Area, established in 1986, protects pristine native forest (Scott et al. 1986) where M. lanaiensis may persist (Wakelee and Fancy 1999). Should it be rediscovered, consideration should be given to establishing a captive population at high elevation on East Maui, where the habitat is relatively intact and free of threat from mosquitoes and avian disease (USFWS 2003). Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct surveys to locate any remaining populations and, if found, urgently assess action required for its recovery.

Clement, P.; Hathway, R. 2000. Thrushes. Christopher Helm, London.

Loope, L. L.; Medeiros, A. C. 1995. Strategies for long-term protection of biological diversity in rainforests of Haleakala National Park and East Maui, Hawaii. Endangered Species Update 12: 1-5.

Pratt, H. D. 1994. Avifaunal change in the Hawaiian Islands, 1893-1993. Studies in Avian Biology 15: 103-118.

Reynolds, M. H.; Snetsinger, T. J. 2001. The Hawai`i Rare Bird Search 1994-1996. Studies in Avian Biology 22: 133-143.

Scott, J. M.; Mountainspring, S.; Ramsey, F. L.; Kepler, C. B. 1986. Forest bird communties of the Hawaiian Islands: their dynamics, ecology, and conservation. Cooper Ornithological Society, California.

Wakelee, K. M.; Fancy, S. G. 1999. Oma'o (Myadestes obscurus), Kama'o (Myadestes myadestinus), Oloma'o (Myadestes lanaiensis) and 'Amaui (Myadestes woahensis). In: Poole, A.; Gill, F. (ed.), The birds of North America, No. 460, pp. 1-28. The Academy of Naural Sciences and The American Ornithologists' Union, Philadelphia and Washington, DC.

Further web sources of information
Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) species/site profile. This species has been identified as an AZE trigger due to its IUCN Red List status and limited range.

Audubon WatchList

Click here for more information about the Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE)

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Revised Recovery Plan for Hawaiian Forest Birds 2006 Myadestes lanaiensis rutha

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Bird, J., Butchart, S., Harding, M., Isherwood, I., Khwaja, N., Stattersfield, A., Stuart, T., Symes, A. & Derhé, M.

Baker, H., Baker, P., Camp, R., Fretz, J., Gorresen, M., Lepson, J., VanderWerf, E., Wakelee, K. & Woodworth, B.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Myadestes lanaiensis. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Olomao (Myadestes lanaiensis) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Critically Endangered - Possibly Extinct
Family Turdidae (Thrushes)
Species name author (Wilson, 1891)
Population size 1-49 mature individuals
Population trend Unknown
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 19 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species