Fruit flies on a mango

Fruit Flies feed on a mango

This week’s posts are in response to the WordPress photo challenge on the theme of ‘transient.’

This little scene could be considered transient on three counts. First is the fact that this is a mango that has fallen from the tree. In the life cycle of a mango, it’s a very short interval between ripening on the tree and rotting on the ground. Second, this mango has clearly been chewed over by one of the transient wild pigs that pass through from time to time, more so during mango season. And third, these fruit flies won’t be around long either, having a lifespan in the region of 30 days.

This fruit fly, also called the vinegar fly, is probably Zaprionus ghesquierei, an invasive species known to have reached Hawaii. Zaprionus indianus also looks like this, but hasn’t been seen in Hawaii yet, as far as I know.

Mauna Kea snow

Snow covers the summit of Mauna Kea

This week’s posts are in response to the WordPress photo challenge on the theme of ‘transient.’

Despite the tropical latitude of the Big Island, Mauna Kea can get snow at any time of year. It’s always fun to see the mountain with a white coating. In the winter it sometimes sticks around for a while. At other times of the year it’s usually here today, gone tomorrow.




Pacific golden-plover

A Pacific Golden Plover with summer plumage.

A while ago I did a week’s worth of posts in response to a WordPress photo challenge on the theme of ‘evanescent.’ I thought I’d take a similar approach to this week’s theme, ‘transient,’ which is basically a synonym of evanescent.

Migrating birds are transient, in that they spend time in one area where they breed before moving to regular wintering grounds. The Pacific golden-plover is one such bird. After wintering in Hawaii, these birds fly north to spend May, June, and July at breeding grounds in the Arctic. Not only that, but this is one bird that dresses for the occasion! Normally, a mostly brown bird with flecks of yellow (as seen here), its summer plumage takes on this splendid black and white frontage.

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.