The ‘Ula-‘ai-Hawane (Ciridops anna) was a small Hawai’ian Honeycreeper, now extinct. The term ‘Ula-‘ai-Hawane is a Hawai’ian phrase translating to “red [bird] that eats hawane“. It was only ever reported from the forested mountains of the Kohala, Hilo and Kona districts on the island of Hawai’i. Fossil remains reveal that it (and at least one closely related species, Ciridops tenax) also existed at one time on other Hawai’ian islands.
The average length of the bird was around 11 cm (4¼”). With respect to coloring, the adult was patterned red overall, while the head, throat, and upper back were silvery gray. The crown, wings, breast, shoulder, and tail were black, and the tertials (= the flight feathers that are closest to the bird’s body along the wing) a white color. The legs and bill were yellowish. Immature birds were brownish overall with a bluish-gray breast, black wings and tail, and a greenish-brown back.
‘Ula-‘ai-Hawane are thought to have fed on the seeds and flowers of the loulu palms Pritchardia affinis, P. beccariana, P. lanigera and P. schattaueri. The bird’s name suggests it liked the unripe fruits (hawane) particularly well. The decline of these palms may have sealed the fate of the bird. As the ‘Ula-‘ai-Hawane was only ever seen near loulu palms, it is assumed that they were fully dependent on them for survival. The last confirmed sighting of the bird was in the Kohala Mountains in 1892.