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Thanks to an active intervention program, at Whangarei Heads we really do have kiwi in our backyard.

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June 5th, 2018

2018 May Update

We are having a party

To celebrate the red carpet screening of “The Kiwi Release” the first story in the Backyard Kiwi Pilot Series of video stories and you are invited.

Look out for more information here and on face book closer to the 30th June.

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum AGM 

Great to have over 30 folks brave the weather and contribute to our AGM . Congratulations to Philip King, Helen Moodie and Audrey Rhodes for their re-election to Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer. Thank you to these three and the other hard working committee members.  WHLF is a crucial platform for the various Landcare groups at the Heads and it enables much of the positive work being done to happen. It was great to hear what the many groups are achieving at the Whangarei Heads. We also heard from special guests Ngaire Tyson, who updated us on the Kiwi Coast (112 entities and growing!) and also Paul Dimery (NRC Councillor) and Kane McElrea (Biosecurity Manager NRC) who updated us on the NRC Long Term Plan process that has lead to a replacement of the Whangarei Heads Pest Management Targeted rate with an increased general Pest Management rate.   This will mean an overall reduction in the amount paid by individual rate payers in the Whangarei Heads area for pest management (as we previously paid a general pest management rate and a targeted rate), but the contribution to kiwi recovery work and weeds will remain at least the same. As promised to those at the meeting my report on the summary of operations of BYK is attached.

Kiwi Call Count

This crappy weather is making things very difficult for our team of 40 kiwi call counters to get their 4 nights of call counts in the designated listening window.

Backyard Kiwi Predator Control Programme:

Apart from plenty of rats and hedgehogs trap catches have dropped off as expected for the start of winter.

Catches for May  in the predator traps:

Stoats 0, Weasels 2, Cats 3, Rats 87, Hedgehogs 25 and 10 possums.

What your radio tracked Backyard Kiwi have been up to:

A couple of the dads are showing potential nest starts but the activity of the others remains high.

  • Darwin – At Lamb road, in the bush just south of the quarry. His nightly activity is 12 hours.
  • Lambert – In pampas at Taurikura ridge. Activity 12.5 hours per night. Feeding up for breeding.
  • Whitu – Usual area at freezing works, activity down  a bit at 8 hours so may be starting to nest.
  • EB – In pampas at Kerr rd..  His activity is varying from 12 hours to some nights of 7 hours so he may be starting a nest.
  • Pakipaki – In pampas below the Manaia club. Activity mainly high.
  • JJ2 – she has an activity of 12.5 hours and seems to have settled back into the scrub between Kerr Road and Rarangi Heights.

Recent Release

Apart from Ross these guys seem to have settled for the moment:



  • Ross – After going south, then east he has now headed west! He spent a week or so in the Kohinui Valley (exciting for the Kohinui Landcare group!) and is now in the dense privet stand inland from Solomon’s point. Folks have been hearing him call near Pepi road.
  • Harikoa – I did her 3 month band change on her transmitter. She is now 1850g in weight and has bill of 113.1mm (up from release at 1630g and 106.0mm). She is in the Ross’s pines between Taraunui road and Lamb Road ·              Rukuwai – She is settled for the moment in the scrub between  Kauri Mt road and Kerr rd.
  • Mokopuna – Her transmitter became faulty and I was very lucky to catch up with her. She happened to be close to where I park at the quarry and I picked up a very weak faulty signal from patch of pampas 30m away – any further and I would have lost her.  She now has a new transmitter and was 2050g and 128.7mm (cf 2150g and 127.5mm at release). She was also within 30m of a working digger.  She has remained here near Darwin

ONE program (funded by Kiwis for Kiwi):

Rewarewa  .

These guys are also showing high activity feeding up for nesting.

  • The Acrobat – Usual area in Lovell’s fenced bush. Still no sign of nesting.
  • Waimarie – not nesting. 10 hours activity in paddock North of quarry.
  • Ngutu Roa – not nesting 12 hours activity, changed transmitter, he was 2350g. and G.
  • Sancho – Not nesting, 12.5 hours, just in paddock N of reserve.
  • CFU – His activity has been lowish (7-8 hours) past 3 checks so thought he may be starting to nest but a visual check showed that he wasn’t nesting. Changed his transmitter, he was 2100g and M.
  • The Boxer – usual area W end of reserve. Activity 12 hours.

Upcoming Transfer

Emma found LC1614 in a petrel nesting box on Limestone recently and she is ready for transfer. Plan is 10am at Onerahi ramp by the Yacht club for FOMLI public event, a visit to Whangarei Heads School and Parua Bay School followed by release at the Ross property (not a public release).


Todd Hamilton

Backyard Kiwi Project Manager

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum

M 021 1145 385




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