VIDEO: UH Hilo research and conservation work for the ‘alalā (Hawaiian crow)

UH Hilo scientists and partners working on bringing the ‘alalā (Hawaiian crow) back from near extinction are celebrating the first hatchlings of the 2016 breeding season.

Jolene Sutton
Jolene Sutton

San Diego Zoo Global has just released a video featuring University of Hawai‘i at Hilo research and conservation work for the ‘alalā (Hawaiian crow). San Diego Zoo Global, in partnership with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the State of Hawai‘i Division of Forestry and Wildlife has created two bird propagation centers in Hawai‘i: the Keauhou Bird Conservation Center and the Maui Bird Conservation Center, with bird releases and other fieldwork occurring at other field sites.

In collaboration with PacBio, scientists at San Diego Zoo Global and UH Hilo have fully sequenced the genome of the ‘alalā. Featured in the video is the work of Jolene Sutton, assistant professor of biology who specializes in evolutionary genetics, population genetics, conservation biology, immunology, and genetic engineering, and Rachel Gorenflo, a UH Hilo undergraduate working with Sutton in the lab of the Department of Biology.

About the video:

Animal care staff at San Diego Zoo Global’s Hawai‘i Endangered Bird Conservation Program are celebrating the first ‘alalā to be hatched in the 2016 breeding season. Later this year, hatched ‘alalā chicks will go back to their native forests on the Big Island of Hawai‘i.

The ‘alalā, or Hawaiian crow, has been extinct in the wild since 2002, preserved only in the program run by San Diego Zoo Global at its Hawaiian bird centers.

RELATED: Collaborative research team completes gene sequencing for the Hawaiian crow (UH Hilo Stories, Jan. 27, 2016).


-UH Hilo Stories