Waterbird Surveys

Waterbird Surveys

State of Hawaii Biannual Waterbird Surveys


Waterbird surveys have been conducted since as far back as the 1940s when Christmas Bird Counts were initiated on Oʻahu and subsequently expanded to other islands. Biannual surveys (summer and winter) were initiated in 1970 following the listing of four species of our endemic waterbirds as federally endangered during 1967-1970 under the Endangered Species Acts of 1966 and 1969. An assessment of wetland habitats was also completed during this time.

Surveys are synchronized to achieve the following goals:

  1. Simultaneously survey (census) suitable habitat on the main Hawaiian Islands.
  2. Track minimum population estimates of endemic and migratory waterbirds.

Target species include endemic waterbirds, koloa-mallard hybrids, feral/domestic mallards, and migratory shorebirds and waterfowl on the main Hawaiian Islands.

Photo of Hawaiian coot

Hawaiian coot, ‘Alae ke‘oke‘o; photo by A. Works.

Hawaiian duck photo

Hawaiian duck, Koloa maoli; photo by C. Malachowski.

Hawaiian gallinule photo

Hawaiian gallinule, ‘Alae ‘ula; photo by A. Works.

Hawaiian stilt photo

Hawaiian stilt, Ae‘o; photo by A. Works.

Survey Protocol

Survey Instructions

Survey Datasheet

Survey Photo Guide

Survey Dashboard (Under Construction)

Training Materials: