Viridonia sagittirostris Rothschild

Greater Amakihi (Viridonia sagittirostris)  

The so called Greater Amakihi, which is also known as Green Solitaire, was endemic to the island of Hawai’i, and was already restricted to a tiny area in the coastal rain forest of the Hamakua District in northeastern Hawai’i, when it was first discovered in 1892.  

The bird reached a size of about 17 cm, both sexes were mainly bright olive-green, with narrow black lores, the black beak was long, nearly straight, and sharp-pointed, the bases of the mandibles were light blue.  

Its food consisted mostly of insects, which the bird found while probing into bark crevices and leaf axils. [1]  


Even though the Greater Amakihi superficially resembles the Amakihi (Hemignathus virens (Gmelin)), both species are/were not closely related, the Greater Amakihi does not belong in the genus Hemignathus but is more closely related to the extinct genus Aidemedia. [1]  



[1] H. Douglas Pratt: The Hawaiian Honeycreepers: Drepanidinae. Oxford Univ. Pr. 2005  


Depiction from: ‘W. Rothschild: The Avifauna of Laysan and the neighbouring islands with a complete history to date of the birds of the Hawaiian possession. 1893-1900’    

(public domain)


edited: 24.09.2017