Bronze jumping spider

a bronze jumping spider (Eris militaris)a bronze jumping spider (Eris militaris)
I think this is a bronze jumping spider (Eris militaris). They’re very small, a quarter-inch or less, and quite speedy getting about. This one is a male.

Young blue-spotted cornetfish

Young blue-spotted cornetfish in very shallow water

I came across this little group of young blue-spotted cornetfish near to shore in very shallow water. They reminded me of pieces in a pick-up sticks game.

Abstracts: Mango and agave

An agave catches a fallen mango.

When the mangoes start falling, they get everywhere. This agave catches several each year.


Fa‘afaite Tahitian voyaging canoe

The Tahitian voyaging canoe Fa‘afaite off the coast of the Big Island of Hawaii.The Tahitian voyaging canoe Fa‘afaite off the coast of the Big Island of Hawaii.

Yesterday saw the return of the Hawaiian voyaging canoe, Hokuleʻa, from its 3-year Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage. There was a ceremony on Oahu to mark the return featuring Hokuleʻa’s sister canoe, Hikianalia, and several other Polynesian voyaging canoes.

Earlier in the week, one of the canoes, Fa‘afaite, from Tahiti, was waiting for its sister canoe, Okeanos, off the Kohala coast, before carrying on to Oahu. These voyaging canoes use traditional instrument-free navigation on their travels.

For more information about Hokuleʻa and the Polynesian Voyaging Society, go to

The Tahitian voyaging canoe Fa‘afaite off the coast of the Big Island of Hawaii.

Turbine trouble

A wind turbine at Hawi Wind Farm undergoes repairA wind turbine at Hawi Wind Farm undergoes repair

This is what happens when you don’t use a torque wrench! Wouldn’t that be great. Just imagine those blades flying off when the nut comes loose. Alas, this was nowhere near as dramatic.

This is Hawi Wind Farm in North Kohala. I saw the cranes in place one Friday afternoon, and the lighting units suggested night work. Nothing happened that weekend. On Monday, ropes were attached to the blades. On Tuesday, this scene was what I found, the blades having been removed overnight. On Wednesday, everything was back to normal, with this turbine whirring around in concert with the rest of them.

‘Malay Rose’ torch ginger

These ‘Malay Rose’ torch ginger (Etlingera venusta) flowers were in bloom at Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden.

These ‘Malay Rose’ torch ginger (Etlingera venusta) flowers were in bloom on my last visit to Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden.

For more information about Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, go to


A wild pig snacks on mangoes

A wild pig snacks on fallen mangoesA wild pig that has been eating fallen mangoes

If yesterday’s post was a hog in name only, today’s is the real thing.

It’s mango season again. While the tree in the yard isn’t quite as bountiful as last year, it’s still dropping mangoes often enough to make me cringe when I walk under its canopy. I try to pick up the fruit on a daily basis, but don’t always succeed. Not that it remains on the ground long.

Fallen mangoes are a draw to numerous birds, which can be seen pecking away most times I look out of the window. And, of course, the wild pigs love them. They usually visit overnight and all I see of their visit is a littering of chewed mango pits.

This pig was an early morning visitor, but still around well after sunrise. When I saw it, I got my camera, eased out of the back door, and started snapping. I never know how creatures will react to my presence. Some, such as grey francolins, scurry off as soon as they think something’s going on. This pig, on the other hand, didn’t seem too bothered, snuffling her way across the yard in my direction until she looked me in the eye and decided enough was enough, scooting through the hedge into the neighbor’s yard.

Notice, in the photo to the left, the mango lipstick on the pig.

Hawaiian hogfish

A Hawaiian hogfish swims in the waters off the Big Island of Hawaii

Despite its less-than-flattering name, the Hawaiian hogfish is quite an attractive fish. This one is a female, somewhere between a sub-adult and mature fish, I think. I don’t see a lot of these when I’m snorkeling, and usually they’re too deep to get a decent photo. This one was not only cruising the shallows, but obliging enough to cross not far in front of me.

In my attempts to identify what I see in the water, I use John P. Hoover’s book The Ultimate Guide to Hawaiian Reef Fishes, Sea Turtles, Dolphins, Whales, and Seals. His website is