Haha (Cyanea copelandii ssp. haleakalaensis)
Cyanea copelandii ssp. haleakalaensis
|Listed||September 3, 1999|
|Description||A vine-like, tropical shrub.|
|Habitat||Native tropical forest.|
|Threats||Habitat destruction, introduced mammalian herbivores, non-native slugs, invasive alien plants.|
The haha is a vine-like shrub, growing 1-7 ft (0.3-2 m) tall, with sprawling stems. Its sap, visible when branches are broken, is a tan-colored latex. Stems grow from the base and are unbranched or sparingly branched. The leaves are elliptical, 4-7 in (10-19 cm) long, and 1.4-3.3 in (3.5-8.5 cm) wide. The lower surface of the leaves is hairy, but the upper surface is not. The margin of the leaves is slightly thickened, and has small, widely spaced, sharp teeth. The leaf petiole is 1-4 in (2.5-10 cm) long. The inflorescence contains 5 to 12 flowers, and is supported by a peduncle (stalk) 0.8-1.8 in (20-45 mm) long. The hypanthium (flower"base) is oval, wider at the top, 0.2-0.4 in (6-10 mm) long, about 0.2 in (5 mm) wide, and hairy. The corolla (the petals) is yellowish, but appears pale rose in color due to a covering of dark red hairs. The corolla is 1.4-1.6 in (37-42 mm) long and about 0.2 in (5 mm) wide. The corolla tube is gently curved and the lobes spread beyond the tube. The ripe berries are dark-orange in color, oval-shaped, and 0.3-0.6 in (7-15 mm) long.This subspecies is differentiated from other sub-species of Cyanea copelandii by its elliptical, relatively short leaves. It differs from others in the endemic genus Cyanea by its vine-like habit and yellowish flowers that appear red due to the covering of hairs.
The haha inhabits stream banks and wet scree slopes in montane wet or mesic tropical forest dominated by koa (Acacia koa ) and/or o'hia (Metrosideros polymorpha ). It occurs at elevations between 2,400 and 4,400 feet (730-1,340 m).
The haha is a locally evolved, or endemic, species that is only known from the island of Maui, Hawaii. The Hawaiian archipelago has an extremely large fraction of endemic species; about 89% of the indigenous flowering plants occur nowhere else in the world. The haha was historically reported from six locations on the windward (northeastern) side of Haleakala, East Maui, from Waikamoi to the Kipahulu Valley.
The major threats to the haha are habitat degrada tion and/or destruction by feral pigs, and competition with several species of introduced, invasive plants, such as the shrub strawberry guava (Psidium cattleianum ), the thimbleberry (Rubus rosifolius ), and other non-native plants. Introduced rats and slugs are also probably herbivores of this plant. Because of its limited range and small population size, the haha is also potentially threatened by catastrophic events of weather, wildfire, or other disturbances. The haha is now known from only two populations. One population of about 200 individuals is in the Kipahulu Valley within Haleakala National Park, and the other of 35 individuals is on the lower Waikamoi flume, on privately owned land.
Conservation and Recovery
The major surviving population of the haha is located within Haleakala National Park, which is managed to conserve its indigenous biodiversity. The other population is on private land, and is potentially at risk from disturbance or other human actions. Conservation of the endangered haha requires that all its critical habitat be protected and managed to reduce the threats posed by non-native herbivores and competitors. The populations of the haha should be monitored against further change, and research undertaken to develop a better understanding of degrading influences faced by the endangered plant, and ways of mitigating those effects.
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Regional Office, Division of Endanagered Species
Eastside Federal Complex
911 N. E. 11th Ave.
Portland, Oregon 97232-4181
U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Pacific Islands Ecoregion, Pacific Islands Fish and Wildlife Office
300 Ala Moana Boulevard, Room 3-122
P. O. Box 50088
Honolulu, Hawaii 96850-0056
Telephone: (808) 541-3441
Fax: (808) 541-3470
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 3 September 1999. "Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Final Endangered Status for 10 Plant Taxa From Maui Nui, Hawaii." Federal Register 64 (171): 48307-48324.