Haha (Cyanea stictophylla)
|Listed||March 4, 1994|
|Description||Shrub or tree sometimes covered with small sharp projections and yellowish white or purple flowers.|
|Habitat||Koa- and 'ohi'a-dominated lowland mesic and wet forests.|
|Threats||Grazing and trampling by feral cattle, limited numbers.|
Cyanea stictophylla, a type of haha, is a shrub or tree 2-20 ft (0.6-6.1 m) tall, sometimes covered with small sharp projections. The alternate, stalked, oblong, shallowly lobed, and toothed leaves are 3-6 in (7.6-15.2 cm) long and 1.6-3.1 in (4.1-7.9 cm) wide. Clusters of five or six flowers have main flowering stalks 0.4-1.6 in (1-4.1 cm) in length; each flower has a stalk 0.3-0.9 in (7.6-22.9 mm) long. The hypanthium is topped with five calyx lobes 0.1-0.2 in (2.5-5.1 mm) long and 0.04-0.1 in (1-2.5 mm) wide. The yellowish white or purple petals, 1.4-2 in (3.6-5.1 cm) long, are fused into an arched, five-lobed tube about 0.2 in (5.1 mm) wide. The spherical berries are orange. This species differs from others in the genus by its lobed toothed leaves and its larger flowers with small calyx lobes and deeply lobed corollas.
C. stictophylla sometimes grows epiphytically (not rooted in soil) and is found in koa- and 'ohi'a-dominated lowland mesic and wet forests at elevations of 3,500-6,400 ft (1,066.8-1,950.7 m). Associated species include tree ferns, alani, and opuhe.
Historically, this species was known only from the island of Hawaii on the western, southern, southeastern, and eastern slopes of Mauna Loa.
In the late 1990s it was known to be extant near Keauhou and in South Kona on private land. The three known populations, which extend over a distance of about 38 by 10 mi (61.2 by 16.1 km), contain a total of approximately 15 individuals. Forty-six outplanted individuals survive on Puu Waawaa and in Kau Forest Reserve.
The primary reasons for decline of this species are destruction of former habitat by cattle grazing and degradation of current habitat by feral pigs. In addition, the small number of plants and the scattered distribution of populations may limit the gene pool (resulting in decreased reproductive vigor) and make them vulnerable to extirpation by random events.
Conservation and Recovery
The National Tropical Botanical Garden has germinated seeds and propagated the taxon. The single wild individual on Puu Waawaa has been fenced. Seeds from this wild plant were germinated, and approximately 68 individuals were planted in the mid-1990s within a separate enclosure on Puu Waawaa. Of these individuals, about 40 have survived. Seeds from the same wild individual at Puu Waawaa were used to establish six individual plants in an enclosure on the Kau Forest Reserve.
Propagation and maintenance of ex situ stock should be encouraged. Current populations should be protected from ungulates and augmented, where possible. At least two new populations will need to be established and numbers increased to meet recovery criteria.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Regional Office, Division of Endangered Species
Eastside Federal Complex
911 N.E. 11th Ave.
Portland, Oregon 97232-4181
Telephone: (503) 231-6121
Pacific Remote Islands Ecological Services Field Office
300 Ala Moana Blvd., Room 3-122
P.O. Box 50088
Honolulu, Hawaii 96850
Telephone: (808) 541-1201
Fax: (808) 541-1216
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 1996. "Big Island Plant Cluster Recovery Plan." U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Portland, Oregon. 202 pp.