‘Alae’ula

‘Alae’ula
5 x 7 inches
Acrylic on Panel

This bird is a lovely little endemic ‘Alae’Ula or Hawaiian Moorhen or Mudhen – it has a lot of names and a lot of stories. It is about 2/3 the size of a chicken. I love the long brightly colored legs, extra long fancy toes, and rubbery red beak of this wading bird. Sadly, it is endangered, so they are all running around with little tracking bracelets on one ankle. One of its main Oahu wetlands is really close to the town center of Kailua. It’s always strange to see this rare bird so close to stores and boutiques considering its conservation status. They can be surprisingly friendly, but shouldn’t be fed by hand since many human foods (bread!) aren’t nutritious in the correct ways for birds.

The Hawaiian name, ‘alae ‘ula (“burnt forehead” – for its prominent red frontal shield) comes from a mo’olelo about the origin of fire. These birds were the keepers of the secrets of firemaking.

'Alae'ula, 5 x 7 inches, Acrylic on Panel by Wendy Roberts
A view of the frame



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‘Alae’ula, 5 x 7 inches, Acrylic on Panel, framed… Oahu Delivery $140



‘Alae’ula, 5 x 7 inches, Acrylic on Panel. Shipping to the U.S…. $155


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