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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 8th, 2021

2021 August Report

Keeping to your bubble

I hope that Lockdown has gone as well as it can for you all.  If you have been a bit frustrated at staying in your bubble spare a thought for the kiwi dads who are currently doing 80 plus day nesting stints.  Most are tucked up warm and safe in pampas bushes but those in ground burrows have had some dampness issues to deal with.  On the big up side the good wet weather is keeping the kiwi tucker going well so even those dads that have been nesting and only coming off for 1-3 hours per night are getting a feed. Those not nesting are getting fat and even over weight!  Teina is now 2800g (a kilo more than if he had been nesting).

Backyard Kiwi Predator Control Program:

Catches for August: 0 stoats, 0 weasels, 0 cats, 65 rats, 2 hedgehogs, 0 possums.
One of my lowest catch months ever thanks to Lockdown.

As trapping alone does not keep on top of the stoats in the long run controlled ground based toxin pulses are essential on strategic land blocks at the Heads.

Lockdown also interrupted the Manaia Landcare Kiwi Saver (1080) pulse at Manaia but once it is underway again it will deal with the untrappable stoats in the area. The combination of trapping and strategic secondary poisoning pulses has proved to be very successful for us. All those kiwi chicks hatching at the moment stand a good chance with this stoat control.

What your kiwi have been up to:

The breeding males are hard out nesting with the peak in kiwi chicks hatching due over the next few months.

Whangarei Heads radio tracked Kiwi.



  • Chookie– His second nesting attempt failed after only 10 days.  Did his band change just before Lockdown; 101.7mm, 2150g and Good condition – seems that he was more interested in feeding than nesting. He was in the pampas in Martins’ pine block Owhiwa road
  • Valentine – She has moved back to Martins’ pine block. 6 monthly check; 131.4mm (cf 126mm 14/2/21) 2600g and fat.  She was in the pampas at the SE end of Martins’ Block Owhiwa road.  12 hours nightly activity
  • Ross  – Still in the valley at the top end of Pepi road.  11 hours nightly activity – no sign of nesting.
  • Teina –  This guy doesn’t seem to be interested in breeding after his stint rock incubating.  Did his band change, he is a fat 2800g!!! 10.5 hours nightly average.  He was in the pampas and young pines at the North end of the Martins’ block.

  • Malaika – She has moved up towards Owhiwa Road again – did her 6 montly check; 134.1mm (cf 133mm 16/3/21) 1950g, so may have bred?
  • Beach Girl – Still in the NE end of the Martins’ block- near the end of Ross Road.  10.5 hours activity. Did her transmitter change; 3100g and fat.
  • Wally – In pampas and gorse at the end of Campell Road.  He hatched his first chick after 70 days nesting and is now holding tight on his second egg with a good low 3 hours nightly activity.
  • Pakipaki – Has moved back into the pampas and gorse in the McLeod Bay Horse Paddock, 12 hrs activity.


These guys are nesting hard.

Chicks should be starting to hatch in the first of the nests shortly:

  • Nick– Nesting in his usual area in Lovells’ Bush.  60 days in on 6/9/21, 3 hours nightly activity.
  • Sancho – In Lovells’ Bush just NE of the reserve fence.  22 days nesting on 6/9/21.
  • Kimposter – Was nesting in his usual area above the quarry. 10 days in on 5/8/21 and 4 hours activity but no signal from him now.
  • Ngutu roa – West of the big slip on the south side of the reserve. Nesting 26 days on 6/9/21, 4 hours activity.
  • Ngaro – No signal for last 3 months. I had a wide search for him so maybe transmitter failure.
  • Moondust – Nesting behind the woolshed – 50 days nesting on 6/9/21, 3 hours nightly activity.
  • Gorgeous- He was nesting on the South side of Hawkins’ Hill. 42 days in on 5/8/21 and 4.5 hours nightly activity. But the nest failed some time shortly after that. I did his band change and he is still in very good condition and 2150g.  His paddock nest burrows are in volcanic soil, which are great in dry conditions but they end up wet and muddy in these wetter conditions which isn’t the best for incubating eggs. Pampas is heaps better for nesting in!
  • Namakia – Nesting in Lovells’ Bush next to the logged area. 60 days in on 6/9/21, 3.5 hours activity.

A busy couple of kiwi months ahead.
Stay safe

Cheers Todd

Todd Hamilton

Backyard Kiwi Project Manager

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum



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