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Common Names Oʻahu ʻŌʻō; Conservation status (...See More)
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Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
(Moho apicalis)

1 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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2 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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3 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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4 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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5 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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6 Oʻahu ʻŌʻō
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All images shown here are in the public domain because its copyright has expired.
(Unless otherwise stated)

5. © Reproduced by kind permission of the artist Lisa

Taxonomy & Status

Common Names

Oʻahu ʻŌʻō;

Conservation status

Extinct - Last collected 1837

Scientific classification

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Suborder: Passeri
Parvorder: Passerida
Family: Mohoidae
Genus: Moho
Species: M. apicalis

Binomial name

Moho apicalis


Moho niger

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Oʻahu ʻŌʻō

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Citation: Godino, F.M.J. (). Oʻahu ʻŌʻō & .Downloaded on .
Disclaimer:To make use of this information shown on this page, please check the Conditions of use.
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Brief Summary

The O‘ahu ‘Ō‘ō (Moho apicalis) is a member of the extinct genus of the ‘Ō‘ōs (Moho) within the extinct family Mohoidae. It was previously regarded as member of the Australo-Pacific honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)


The males reached a length of 30.5 centimetres. The wing length was 10.5 to 11.4 centimetres, the culmen was between 3.5 and 3.8 centimetres and the tarsus was between 3.4 and 3.8 centimetres. The females were smaller. The plumage was predominantly sooty black. The tail feathers were brown and had, with the exception of the two central tail feathers, white tips. Further characteristics were the white feather tufts under the axillaries and the two narrow central tail feathers which changed into fine hair-like or fibrous tips. The flanks and the undertail coverts were coloured deeply yellow. The bill and the tarsus were black. Its biology is not well-studied.

Occurrence and Habitat

Its habitat was the mountain forests on O‘ahu.


The O‘ahu ‘Ō‘ō was first mentioned by Andrew Bloxam. While in the Hawaiian Islands in 1825 as the naturalist on board HMS Blonde, he saw live birds which were brought to him by locals. He preserved one specimen obtained in this way. He wrote in his diary (not published until much later): "They are now very scarce in all the islands. I did not see even one in the different excursions I made, & the natives asked a high price for the very few they brought to me." Bloxam mis-identified his birds as the species now called Moho nobilis.

John Gould scientifically named and described the O‘ahu ‘Ō‘ō in 1860, when it was already regarded as vanished for 23 years. The last reliable evidence was a collection of about three birds by German naturalist Ferdinand Deppe in 1837. He found these specimens in the hills behind the capital Honolulu.

After surveys, led for example by ornithologist Robert C. L. Perkins, failed to find the bird between 1880 and 1890, it was described as almost extinct. Today there are about seven specimens in the museum collections in Berlin, London, New York City and Cambridge (Massachusetts).

The reasons for its extinction were probably avian diseases caused by introduced mosquitos, habitat destruction by cattle and goats, deforestation, predation by introduced rats, and hunting (their plumage was used in robes for the Hawaiin nobility).

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Images Gallery
All images shown here are in the public domain because its copyright has expired.
(Unless otherwise stated)

Illustation from Wilson & Evans' "Aves Hawaiiensis"
Showing Acrulocercus apicalis which is now a synonym of the Oʻahu ʻŌʻō (Moho apicalis)
By Frederick W. Frohawk (1861-1946).

Illustration showing Oʻahu ʻŌʻō (Moho apicalis)
From Avifauna of Laysan By Lionel Walter Rothschild, 2nd Baron Rothschild (1868–1937)
By John Gerrard Keulemans (1842-1912) (Dutch bird illustrator), which was issued from 1893-1900.

Oʻahu ʻŌʻō (Moho apicalis) and Kioea (Chaetoptila angustipluma)
From Rothschild, Lionel Walter Rothschild, baron, 1868-1937 / Extinct birds.
An attempt to unite in one volume a short account of those birds which have become extinct in historical times
that is, within the last six or seven hundred years.
To which are added a few which still exist, but are on the verge of extinction (1907).

Reproduced by kind permission of the artist Lisa

PDF Gallery

Please note that due to the size of some of the PDF files provided may take time to load.

PDF Links

* Encyclopédie d'histoire naturelle; ou,
Traité complet de cette science d'après les travaux des naturalistes les plus éminents de tous les pays et de toutes les époques:
Buffon, Daubenton, Lacépède, G. Cuvier, F. Cuvier, Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, Latreille, De Jussieu, Brongniart, etc. etc (In French)
By Jean Charles Chenu, (1808-1879)& Eugène Desmarest, (1816-1890).
Published between 1850?-1861?. PDF abstract text

* Remarks on the Avifauna of the Sandwich Islands.
VOL. I. Third Series 1871. PDF fulltext

* On recent Additions to our Knowledge of the Avifauna of the Sandwich Islands.
VOL. III. Fourth Series 1879. PDF fulltext

* Catalogue of the Birds in the British Museum.
VOLUME IX, 1884 PDF abstract text

* Wilson and Evans's 'Aves Hawaiienses.'
VOL. VI. Sixth Series 1894. PDF fulltext

* Rothschild on the Avifauna of Laysan.
VOL. I. Eighth Series 1901. PDF fulltext

* Unrecorded specimens of two rare Hawaiian birds.
Proceedings of The Biological Society of Washington.
23:67-69 (1910). PDF fulltext

* Bangs on two rare Hawaiian Birds.
VOL. IV. Ninth Series 1910. PDF fulltext

* Notes on some Hawaiian Birds.
VOL. II. Eleventh Series 1920. PDF fulltext

* History of endemic Hawaiian birds. Introduction.
Avian History Report
, March 1979. PDF fulltext

* History of endemic Hawaiian birds: specimens in museum collections.
Avian History Report
, July 1979. PDF fulltext

* History of endemic Hawaiian birds: Part I: population histories, species accounts: forest birds: 'Elepaio, 'Ō'ō, & Kioea.
Avian History Report
, December 1981. PDF fulltext


* BirdLife International 2008. Moho apicalis. In: IUCN 2009. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2009.2. <>. Downloaded on 25 January 2010.
* Fleischer, Robert C.; Helen F. James; Storrs L. Olson (2008-12-11) "Convergent Evolution of Hawaiian and Australo-Pacific Honeyeaters from Distant Songbird Ancestors" Current Biology (Cell Press) 18 (24): 1927–1931.
* Munro, George C. (1944 and its revised 2nd. edition from 1960): Birds of Hawaii
* Flannery, Tim & Schouten, Peter (2001): A Gap in Nature
* Fuller, Errol (2000): Extinct Birds
* Day, David (1981): The Doomsday Book of Animals
* Greenway, James C. (1967): Extinct and Vanishing Birds of the World
* Luther, Dieter (2005): Die ausgestorbenen Vögel der Welt

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