Maiapilo has very showy bright white flowers with 120-180 stamens and lemon yellow centers. The flowers open after sunset and bloom into the early morning hours fading to pink by mid-day.
Two endangered plants including the 'akoko the endangered Ewa hina hina occur on the Refuge among a mostly nonnative vegetation community.
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Chicks have black down, except on the head, neck and throat, where the down is reddish-orange. They are able to run and swim soon after hatching but maintain contact with parents by frequent calling.