The Kaua’i ‘Amakihi (Hemignathus kauaiensis) is one of three ‘Amakihi species and is endemic to Kaua’i. I should probably have mentioned earlier in this series that all the honeycreepers are endemic to Hawai’i, but the ‘Akikiki, ‘Akeke’e, ‘Anianiau, and Kaua’i ‘Amakihi are endemic to Kaua’i alone. In addition, the Kauai ‘Elepaio (which may or may not be a full species) and the Puaiohi are Kaua’i endemic non-honeycreepers.
‘Amakihi are another yellow-green honeycreeper, distinguished from ‘Akeke’e and ‘Anianiau by their black lores (the space between the eye and nostril) and thick, strongly curved grey bill. Like the latter two species, their song is also a trill, but it tends to be a bit slower and wheezier; it’s often compared to the sound of a sewing machine. Their calls are also a bit buzzier than those of other honeycreepers. Their big, curved bills, like that of the ‘I’iwi, could be adapted for pollinating lobelias, but this species also eats insects and forages everywhere from the understory to the canopy.
I actually rarely see ‘Amakihi, although their numbers are supposedly increasing. There seems to be a gradient in their abundance: they are much more common on the western side of the Alaka’i swamp than on the eastern side. They may compete with ‘Anianiau (post about them to follow!) which show the opposite gradient, thought not as obviously. This might suggest that ‘Amakihi are better adapted to drier forests than to the outrageously wet jungle found in the east, but I don’t know of any data on this.