Nene XingThe Nene (roughly nay-nay), a.k.a. the Hawaiian Goose, is Hawaii’s state bird. It’s also endangered. There’s supposed to be a (comparatively) large population in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, but we didn’t see a single one all week. All we saw were a zillion of these signs warning us to avoid hitting them. Maybe it was the wrong time of year, the wrong time of day, or they’re all hiding away from the road.

They warn you not to feed the Nenes either. The concern is that it will encourage them to hang out near roads where they’re more likely to be killed. This reminds me of another bird we did see a lot of. Whatever it was, they were either very stupid or very confident in drivers’ abilities to avoid them, because they would just amble across the road, pausing occasionally, making no effort to dodge the cars zooming at them at 35, 45, or 55 MPH. It was several days before we saw one actually bother to fly a few feet!

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