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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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September 4th, 2019

2019 August Update

A young male got run over near the Nook road turnoff in early August. Thanks to those that tried to help the kiwi and got in touch with me.

Unfortunately he died from the injuries. He was a young 1375g male with no ID chip so had made it to a stoat safe size thanks to our stoat control and was probably using the road to head north and look for some less kiwi dense spot of his own.

New   Kiwi picture book and kiwi print release! 

Heather has been hard at work writing and illustrating another kiwi book inspired by BYK.   Please come and help us celebrate the launch of the book and a beautiful new kiwi print on Sunday Sept 22, 3 pm at McLeod Bay Hall. Parua Bay School students also recently produced some amazing kiwi art work with Heather’s guidance.

Local Civil Defence information afternoon  

The local Civil defence have asked us to let folks know about the upcoming  local information afternoon on Sept 28, 1-4pm at the McLeod Bay Hall – see attached invite.

Kiwi Link concept proven

As outlined last month in the area north of the Backyard Kiwi are 10 community groups in the “Kiwi Link” who have been working hard at trapping as more kiwi walk into their area. One of the transmitted kiwi we released back in February has made his way through the Kiwi Link to the Hancock Forestry managed pine forest at the end of Taraunui Road(see image above).  Check out current locations of our monitored kiwi here Hancocks are a key member of the Kiwi Link putting considerable resources into stoat trapping and dog control. Carl from Pataua North LC helped me locate and catch the kiwi “Pakiri” for his 3 monthly check – he/she was 1680g and 101.2mm bill length (cf 1450g and 95.3mm at release) and still has a bit more growing to do before we know its sex.   Some of the other kiwi released back in February have started to move around much more now that things are wetter. The adult male Teina has been as far north as the Kohinui valley south of Franklin Road before heading back towards Parua Bay and was in rank kikuya on the side of Owhiwa road last check. Awhi on the other hand has headed east to the bush on the east side of Campbell Road. This is all great news for the “Kiwi Link” initiative and also the wider Kiwi Coast because it shows that kiwi can safely move along this community driven “kiwi corridor” as suggested by Ray Pierce many years ago.

Predator Free funding  

Further to the  NRC proposal for increased pest control in some areas, including potentially the Heads and the area north of us for possums particularly. The NRC are currently still negotiating the details of the funding with PF2050. We will update you when we hear more.

Sanctuaries of NZ Conference   

SONZ recently held their annual conference in Whangarei which included a day of very good scientific talks – once again showing the importance of 1080 in pest control and a day on community engagement.  It was inspiring to see the positive work that is going into conservation projects the length of NZ. The third day was a field trip hosted by FOMLI on Limestone Island. I was invited to give a talk on how the kiwi creche is part of the wider Whangarei district community driven kiwi recovery – particularly the success of engagement with dog owners through kiwi releases and monitoring.

Backyard Kiwi Predator Control Programme :

July :   Stoat 1, Weasels 2, Cats 1, Rats 48, Hedgehogs 1 and 11 possums.

Female stoats give birth to their pups in September and the large mature males cover larger than usual distances looking to mate with as many females as they can (including kits) so now is a good time to catch the big males.

What your radio tracked Backyard Kiwi have been up to:

Nesting is finally underway after the dry start to the year:

  • Darwin – At Lamb road quarry, nesting in a shallow burrow, 16 days in on 19/8/19. His nightly activity is a good low 3 hours.
  • Whitu – No signal this month.
  • Moa – Nesting behind houses in Taurikura Bay and was 69 days in on 30/8/19, averaging a good low 2 hours nightly activity. Hatch is due very soon.
  • EB – In pampas opposite houses on Kerr road. No sign of nesting with 11 hours activity.
  • Pakipaki – In the pampas and gorse in the “Horse Paddock” opposite the fire station. 12.5 hours activity.
  • Ross – After a short stint down opposite the Parua Bay boat ramp he has headed back up to the top of Pepi Road. Activity steady at 10 hours
  • Harikoa – Still in wetland North East end of Campbell road. 11.5 hours activity.
  • Mokopuna – Still no signal she should be close to Wally.
  • Wally – Nesting in the same gum tree and pampas area at the end of Campbell road as he did last year.  35 days in on 8/8/19,  activity is a good low 2.5 hours, hatch due mid-September.
    Recent Releases at Parua Bay
  • Teina –  He has been walk about from Parua Bay to almost Franklin road and back to halfway down Owhiwa Rd. Activity 12 hours.
  • Malaika – In wetland in Ross’s pines, Taraunui road.  Activity is 11 hours. Did her 3 monthly check with the new Limestone Ranger Darren Gash as part of his kiwi training . Malaika was 1700g and 112.1mm and is still growing.

  • Pakiri – In Hancock Managed pine block a the end of Taraunui Road. Did 3 monthly check with Carl from PNLC as part of his kiwi training. 1680g and 101.2mm.
  • Awhi- She went walk about again and took a bit of tracking to the bush east of Campbell rd.ONE program (funded by Kiwis for Kiwi):Rewarewa

    These guys should be nesting now but didn’t get in to check them this month.

    Cheers Todd

    Todd Hamilton

    Backyard Kiwi Project Manager, Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum.

    M 021 1145 385, E


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