Hawaiian Geese (Branta Sandvicensis) are known by the Polynesian name Nene, a name derived from their low, mournful Nene-like moans. Their specific name refers to the tropical archipelago formerly known as the Sandwich Islands. They are the only species confined to islands, their range is the smallest and most southerly of true geese. The shorter-winged Nene are sedentary and less incline to fly than most geese. Their neck feathers are deeply grooved or furrowed that their necks appear to be striped with dark wavy lines. Nene nest in grasslands and open forests from the sea level up to the edge on the rainforest, where there is an abundance of winter grass. They shifted to mid-elevations when summer rains produced a bloom of new vegetation. They are the only waterfowl exclusively adapted for life on rough volcanic slopes and lava flows. The hostile, uneven terrain of the steep volcanic slopes brought about longer, stronger legs, as well as longer, partially webbed toes that provide the birds with greater agility. Legs located well forward on the body enable them to walk without waddling, and well-padded feet facilitate traversing rough lava. They are not efficient swimmers and even copulation normally occurs ashore. Formerly gathering in flocks at higher altitudes during the summer, the geese shifted to lower levels in winter to take advantage of the fresh, green growth important for goslings. More browsers than grazers, their long legs and an upright stance enable them to reach relatively high food. Their reproductive season extends from August to April, when pairs nest among vegetation on lava flows, generally between 5,000 and 8,000 feet. The 29/30 days of incubation period is the longest of any goose. While relatively large upon hatching, goslings grow more slowly than other geese, requiring up to three months to reach the flying stage. Goslings do not benefit from the 24 hours of daylight and more limited foraging opportunities possibly account for the slower growth rate. The geese fail to achieve self-sustaining status because of predation by introduced carnivores, an inability of captivereared young to cope with the wild, poor foraging conditions, starvation and dehydration due to poor quality habitat.