Native Bird of the Month 10/2022 - 'Io
Our next feathered friend we'll feature this month is the Hawaiian short-eared owl (Asio flammeus sandwichensis), or pueo. The pueo is Hawaii's only other native raptor species (along with last month's bird, the Hawaiian hawk, or 'io). As a raptor species, pueo are aerial hunters, spending long hours roaming open pastures and meadows in search of small mammals and birds.
If this species looks similar to something you've seen before, the pueo is actually an endemic subspecies of the common short-eared owl. While its relatives are found across large portions of North America, fossil evidence tells us that pueo were established in the main Hawaiian Islands well before the first settlers arrived.
If you'd like to see these birds in the wild, head up in the morning or afternoon hours to Old Saddle Road, or take a cruise out Mana Road, it shouldn't take you long to spot one!