Tag Archives: Haliaeetus sp.

Haliaeetus sp. ‘Hawai’i Islands’

Hawaiian Eagle (Haliaeetus sp.)  

This form is known only based on subfossil remains that were found on the islands of Maui, Moloka’i, and O’ahu.  

The Hawaiian Eagle was the largest predator on the Hawaiian Islands and was capable of killing even the largest Hawaiian birds, the so-called Moa-nalo (Ptaiochen, and Tambetochen). [1]  

The eagle appears to have become extinct before humans arrived on the Hawaiian Islands. [2]  


The Hawaiian form was originally thought to be identical with the Eurasian White-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla L.), but is now thought to represent a morphologically similar but genetically distinct form. [2]  



[1] Storrs L. Olson & Helen F. James: Descriptions of thirty-two new species of birds from the Hawaiian Islands: Part I. Non-Passeriformes. In: Ornithological Monographs 45. 1991 
[2] Frank Hailer; Helen F. James; Storrs L. Olson; Robert C. Fleischer: Distinct and extinct: Genetic differentiation of the Hawaiian eagle. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 83: 40-43. 2015  


edited: 23.10.2016