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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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February 9th, 2023

2023-January Report

Upcoming Kiwi Events

As part of the Kiwi Coast Engagement program there are kiwi being transferred from the FOMLI managed Matakohe/Limestone Island to Matapouri and Parua Bay over the next month.

On Sunday February 19 FOMLI will be celebrating the milestone of the 200th kiwi graduating from their island crèche: 11.30am – see FOMLI facebook page and please RSVP to Jo if you are attending. These kiwi will then be welcomed by the Matapouri Marae and Tutukaka Landcare before being released to add to the growing TLC managed kiwi population.

Backyard Kiwi also plan to host a kiwi release at Parua Bay on Sunday March 5th – more details to follow.

These kiwi releases and the subsequent monitoring of the kiwi via radio transmitters have proven to be a cornerstone of engaging local communities with their kiwi and leading to good dog control – and a far better kiwi population recovery in those areas.  People love to see and hear about their kiwi and go home to tie their dog up.

They are a huge team effort, but well worth it so thanks to all those involved.

What your monitored kiwi are up to:

Parua Bay-Whangarei Heads Radio monitored kiwi:-

  • Hope – she has moved 500m to the valley north of her November release area. Still choosing to be in pampas and young pines habitat. Her activity is 9.5 hours.
  • Fish – has moved 500m NW to the native bush on Martins’ boundary, Owhiwa Road. 9 hours nightly activity.
  • Chookie – This guy successfully hatched 2 chicks at New Year’s from his second nest of the season. The recent Kiwi saver/1080 pulse at the Martins’ block to clean out any trapshy stoats should give these new chicks a good start. Dad is now back to 10 hours activty at night feeding up to regain some condition.
  • Malaika – Has remained over 500m north of her usual area near Chookie. Her activity is still a low-ish 6 hours nightly.
  • Valentine – she is deep in pampas, in a gut North of Martins’ hut and proving hard to catch to remove her transmitter.
  • Teina – He is in the pampas and young pines at the north end of Martins’ block. He is still showing some low-ish activity – 7 hours average but is moving around a bit so still isn’t looking to nest.
  • Beach Girl – She has moved back towards Teina from Ross Road to  the north end of Martins’ Owhiwa block. 9 hours average activity.
  • Pepi – I couldn’t get his signal for over a month but after much searching and listening to radio squelch found him in a deep gut up towards Te Rongo road.
  • Pakipaki – In Johnstone’s paddock McLeod Bay. 9 hours activity.
  • Wally –Has finished his second nest in the Wrights’ pines at the end of Campbell road. He abruptly stopped nesting after 90 days on 30/12/22. His data stream showed the first chick hatching 15 days previously and there was a dead developed second egg in his nest.  When checked on 17/1/23 he had re-nested!!!! For the 3rd time with little to no gap between, Wally is going to be nesting 9 months straight!!
    His activity is currently a good low 3 hours on the 3rd nest. Campbell Road Landcare did a targeted Pest Off pulse last spring which will significantly improve Wally’s chicks’ chances with stoats.

Rarewarewa/Purua ONE dads:

  • Nick – Nesting in Lovells’ Bush.  Hatched his first chick after 75 days and is on a second egg.  When I checked on Jan 28 the chick was too young to move to Limestone so I put a tiny chick transmitter on him. Before carefully returning him to the nest I let him have a quick stretch that I videoed. That clip has been very popular on our facebook page – have a look. Tamra from DoC helped me move the chick (LC2212)  10 days later and he is now in Jo’s safe hands (see pics).
  • Sancho – In the paddock north of Lovells’ quarry. 10 hours activity.
  • Ngutu Roa – Usual area SW reserve, on his  2nd nest. 63 days in on 28/1/23. 3.5 hours activity.
  • Moondust  – Behind Lovells’ woolshed, 9 hours activity.
  • Buddha – In the paddock between McGraths’ quarry and reserve. 9 hours activity.
  • Macio  – On Kauri Tree ridge, southern Purua reserve. 9.5 hours activity.
  • Mitch-  South side of Purua reserve, 11 hours activity.
  • Otiria – South side of Purua reserve, Nightly activity of 9.5 hours.
  • Kopaki – South side of Purua reserve, 11 hours activity.

Purua finds by Lesley and Yagi:  To vary the genetics of the kiwi chicks we transfer to Limestone Island we periodically look for new kiwi dads to get the chicks from. Recently Lesley from Kiwi Coast and her trained kiwi dog Yagi spent a morning on McGraths’ side of the Purua reserve sniffing out kiwi and found 5 kiwi:

  • New adult male– 2050g, 104.6mm, G – ID chipped and transmitted as potential ONE dad.
  • New adult female – 2950g, 135.9mm, G – ID chipped. Found as a pair, Delaraine is working on appropriate Ngati Hine names for them both.
  • Zoe – leg band RA3409. She is an adult female that had been previously found back in 2012 by DoC. Yagi found her in rushes on the edge of the McGraths’ bush block. She was 3000g, bill length of approx. 157mm (my scale only goes to 155mm- this is the second biggest bill that I have ever measured after the record holding Mrs D in the Lamb Road quarry).  She has become blind in both eyes, probably from injuries but she is still in good health and managing well. After being measured and health checked she cruised off navigating the bush easily showing just how well evolved these nocturnal animals are and how well they know their territories through smell marking and a great internal GPS. See pics with Julia from DoC.
  • New chick LC2210- 65.1mm, 550g, ID chipped and transferred to Limestone.
  • New chick LC2211- 57.1mm. 650g, ID chipped and transferred to Limestone (see pics).

These two chicks finds are a real bonus to add to the engagement release program.


Lc 2212

Trapping/ toxin pulses

January catches: Stoats 3, Weasels 2, Cats 3, Rats 60, Hedgehogs 7, Possums 7.


Hope everyone is ready for the coming weather – even the kiwi have probably had enough rain now!


Cheers Todd

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