Pacific Science, Volume 60, Numbers 2, 2006

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    Association Affairs
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii Press, 2006-04)
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    Recovery of Native Species following Rat Eradication on Mokoli‘i Island, O‘ahu, Hawai‘i.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii Press, 2006-04) Smith, David G. ; Shiinoki, Ethan K. ; VanderWerf, Eric A.
    Rats were eradicated from Mokoli‘i, a 1.6-ha island off the east shore of O‘ahu, using snap traps, cage traps, and diphacinone bait stations. A total of 18 black rats (Rattus rattus) were caught, and 354 bait blocks were used. There was no sign of rats on the island after 27 May 2002. Wedge-tailed Shearwaters (Puffinus pacificus) nest on Mokoli‘i, but only a single chick survived during 1999–2001; the number of surviving chicks increased to 126 in 2002 and 185 in 2003. The number of intertidal invertebrates and native plants, including the endangered Carter’s panic grass (Panicum fauriei var. carteri ), also appeared to increase after rat eradication. Rats had a devastating impact on the flora and fauna of Mokoli‘i, and their eradication has allowed a dramatic recovery of native species. The majority of the labor for the eradication effort was provided by the local community, demonstrating what can be achieved with dedicated volunteers and community support.
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    New Species of Rails (Aves: Rallidae) from an Archaeological Site on Huahine, Society Islands.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii Press, 2006-04) Kirchman, Jeremy J. ; Steadman, David W.
    We examined 50 bones previously assigned to ‘‘Gallirallus new sp.’’ from the prehistoric (1,250 750 yr B.P.) Fa‘ahia archaeological site on Huahine, Society Islands. Most of these specimens ðn ¼ 47Þ, representing nearly all major cranial and postcranial skeletal elements, belong to a medium-sized flightless rail that we name Gallirallus storrsolsoni. Three femora represent a second species of extinct rail that we name Porphyrio mcnabi. With the description of these two species of rails, the total number of extinct species of land birds from the Fa‘ahia site stands at seven, consisting of two rails, two doves, two parrots, and a starling. Fa‘ahia also has yielded bones of six other species of land birds that no longer exist on Huahine but survive elsewhere in Oceania.
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    Analysis of Plant Microfossils in Archaeological Deposits from Two Remote Archipelagos: The Marshall Islands, Eastern Micronesia, and the Pitcairn Group, Southeast Polynesia.
    (Honolulu, University of Hawaii Press, 2006-04) Horrocks, Mark ; Weisler, Marshall I.
    Pollen and starch residue analyses were conducted on 24 sediment samples from archaeological sites on Maloelap and Ebon Atolls in the Marshall Islands, eastern Micronesia, and Henderson and Pitcairn Islands in the Pitcairn Group, Southeast Polynesia. The sampled islands, two of which are ‘‘mystery islands’’ (Henderson and Pitcairn), previously occupied and abandoned before European contact, comprise three types of Pacific islands: low coral atolls, raised atolls, and volcanic islands. Pollen, starch grains, calcium oxylate crystals, and xylem cells of introduced non-Colocasia Araceae (aroids) were identified in the Marshalls and Henderson (ca. 1,900 yr B.P. and 1,200 yr B.P. at the earliest, respectively). The data provide direct evidence of prehistoric horticulture in those islands and initial fossil pollen sequences from Pitcairn Island. Combined with previous studies, the data also indicate a horticultural system on Henderson comprising both field and tree crops, with seven different cultigens, including at least two species of the Araceae. Starch grains and xylem cells of Ipomoea sp., possibly introduced I. batatas, were identified in Pitcairn Island deposits dated to the last few centuries before European contact in 1790.