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Kevin W. Brinck

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This report describes the results of a comparative study of bird survey methods undertaken for the purpose of improving assessments of the conservation status for the two endemic passerines on the Island of Nihoa—Nihoa Millerbird (Sylviidae: Acrocephalus familiaris kingi) and Nihoa Finch (Fringilidae: Telespiza ultima; also referred herein as millerbird and finch)—both listed as endangered under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) and Hawai`i Revised Statutes 195D. The current survey protocol, implemented since 1967, has produced a highly variable range of counts for both the millerbird and finch, making difficult assessments of population size and trend. This report details the analyses of bird survey data...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Technical Report
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Both of the 2 passerines endemic to Nihoa Island, Hawai‘i, USA—the Nihoa Millerbird (Acrocephalus familiaris kingi) and Nihoa Finch (Telespiza ultima)—are listed as endangered by federal and state agencies. Their abundances have been estimated by irregularly implemented fixed-width strip-transect sampling from 1967 to 2012, from which area-based extrapolation of the raw counts produced highly variable abundance estimates for both species. To evaluate an alternative survey method and improve abundance estimates, we conducted variable-distance point-transect sampling between 2010 and 2014. We compared our results to those obtained from strip-transect samples. In addition, we applied state-space models to derive improved...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Condor
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Changes in the structure of the subalpine vegetation of Palila Critical Habitat on the southwestern slope of Mauna Kea Volcano, Hawai‘i, were analyzed using 12 metrics of change in māmane (Sophora chrysophylla) and naio (Myoporum sandwicense) trees surveyed on plots in 2000 and 2014. These two dominant species were analyzed separately, and changes in their structure indicated changes in the forest’s health. There was a significant increase in māmane minimum crown height (indicating a higher ungulate “browse line”), canopy area, canopy volume, percentage of trees with ungulate damage, and percentage of dead trees. No significant changes were observed in māmane maximum crown height, proportion of plots with trees,...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Technical Report
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Accurate estimates of the distribution and abundance of endangered species are crucial to determine their status and plan recovery options, but such estimates are often difficult to obtain for species with low detection probabilities or that occur in inaccessible habitats. The Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri) is a cryptic species endemic to Kauaʻi, Hawai‘i, and restricted to high elevation ravines that are largely inaccessible. To improve current population estimates, we developed an approach to model distribution and abundance of Puaiohi across their range by linking occupancy surveys to habitat characteristics, territory density, and landscape attributes. Occupancy per station ranged from 0.17 to 0.82, and was best...
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This data release consists of a single table that includes sample site geographic locations, insect prey abundance, and bat activity and behavior metrics. The dataset was used to develop multi-state occupancy models of foraging habitat use by Hawaiian hoary bats (Lasiurus cinereus semotus).
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