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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 8th, 2023

2023 May Report

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum AGM 

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum AGM 

Thanks to all those that were able to make the WHLF AGM. Great to hear about the wide range of great conservation work being carried out in the district by the various Landcare groups, much thanks to the WHLF platform.  Congratulations to Helen Moodie, Fay Evans and Audrey Rhodes on being electected Chair, Secretary and Treasurer. Also good to have a few new faces on the committee to help get things back up to speed after Covid and other distractions.

Kiwi Counting Season 

The weather has made kiwi counting challenging this year but the kiwi have still been calling well, so much so that a few locals have complained about the racket!

We have finished the count for the first listening period. For those kiwi counters who were unable to do their 4 nights counting the second window starts tomorrow June 7 – hope the bloody weather improves!

The data in to date is looking good, thanks to Fay for the huge job of processing it, we will let you know the final count next month. We have had to fill some sites with KLD (kiwi listening devices) – these are not as good as smart humans with good ears as they hear fewer kiwi and can’t give a direction, but without them we wouldn’t get data from all our almost 20 sites. Thanks to  Karen from Kiwi Coast for all her patient analysis of the data from these machines.

Now that the kiwi calling courtship season is slowing down spare a thought for the mums laying two huge eggs and the dads starting their 3 month nesting stint – I hope they have got a nice dry pampas bush in this heavy rain today!

Northland Pest Control Workshop – Kiwi Coast and NRC

Huge thanks to Ngaire and co from Kiwi Coast for organising and running a fantastic workshop at the Celtic Barn a few weeks back – co-hosts Patuharakeke Te Iwi Trust Board and Piroa Conservation Trust were great hosts for the 200 keen community folk who took part. Great presenters on relevant and interesting pest management stuff – including a team effort at realistic ferret eradication for Northland, the importance of 1080, dog control and effective pig control without dogs just a few things covered.

Fonterra Pest workshop

Ngaire and I had a workshop with Fonterra environment sustainability staff on how they can support their dairy farmers to carry out more effective pest control on their farms.  With each farm doing appropriate possum, ferret and stoat control this not only  benefits  the native biodiversity on the farms it would help hugely with landscape pest control for everyone.

What your monitored kiwi have been up to:

Whangarei Heads/Parua Bay Radio Monitored Kiwi:   

  • Hope – Settled for the moment in the pampas and pines at the North end of Martins’ block Owhiwa Road. 12 hrs nightly activity.
  • Fish – Has once again headed north and is now at the Halses’ block at the end of Ross Road.  11.5 hours of activity.
  • Chookie – Has started nesting. 17 days in on 29/5/23. 4 hours of activity. He seems to be south of his previous nesting area, I will locate the nest more accurately once he is well settled into nesting
  • Teina – Still is in his usual haunt of pampas and pines at the north end of Martins’ pine block Owhiwa road.11 hrs activity – if he doesn’t start breeding soon he is going to have a serious weight problem.
  • Beach Girl – Keeps moving between the pines by Teina and the native bush of Halses’ place at the end of Ross Road.  11.5 hours average activity.
  • Pepi – Found him! Over 2 months since his last signal I found him well north of Pepi Road – now at the end of Te Rongo Road. Can also get a signal from the back of Waikaraka looking east. Locals are very excited to have him there and I’m very pleased to track him down, it has taken plenty of miles with repetitive, careful searching. Keeping regular tabs on him now in case he moves on again to reduce the search area.. 10 hours of activity.
  • Wally – Usual area, pine block at the end of Campbell Road. 11.5 hours activity
  • Pakipaki – In the pampas at the top end of  McLeod Bay Horse paddock. 12 hours activity. Found her with a mate in a pampas bush there – this boy was 2075g, 99.3mm and in good condition. He didn’t have an ID chip so is a wild hatched and grown kiwi. He has an ID chip now and has been named by John Thompson and his local team that look after the Horse Paddock. They have called him Waewae – footprint . Once these two have nested I will remove Pakipaki’s transmitter.


Recently released kiwi:-   

  • Murdoch  – He keeps working his way north  and is now between the end of Owhiwa and Ross Roads.    12 hours of activity.
  • Feta Mama – He has crossed Rukawai stream and headed to the NW end of Martins block at Owhiwa Road. 12 hours of activity.
  • Om – Has also headed further north to the Halses’ block at the end of Ross Road.  12.5 hours of activity.
  • Maia – She has returned from Ross Road and is hanging by the Martins’ hut . 13 hours  of activity.

Rarewarewa/Purua ONE dads:
A couple of retirements  and a death (thanks dads for your chicks, they have gone well and have made a difference to the Whangarei Kiwi population!).

  • Nick –Rolf and Jane recently removed his transmitter and he is now retired from ONE. Thanks Nick, take care.
  • Sancho – Found dead in the paddock on the slope north of Lovells’ quarry.  Dead 20 days and well decomposed (see pic and one of him in better days) – sent to Massey for autopsy. Sancho was due for tx removal so at least this happened before that so we can investigate the cause of his death and follow up on it. Dog? Ferret? Cattle stomp? The recently released Maia was one of this guy’s chicks – she is now doing good work at Parua Bay.
  • Ngutu Roa –  Removed his tx and retired from ONE. 2450g G .  Thanks Ngutu Roa, kia kaha (see pic).
  • Moondust  – On the steep face behind Lovells’ woolshed. I had two attempts at doing his tx change this month but he was in a 2m plus deep borrow and then in a long hollow kohekohe – could see him but not reach. 12 hours activity
  • Buddha – In the creek bed in the paddock between McGraths’ quarry and reserve. 12 hours activity.
  • Macio  – Southern Purua reserve. 11 hours activity.
  • Otiria –  In South side of Purua reserve, 13.5 hours activity.
  •         Mitch   –  In a fallen epiphyte near the western ridge track Purua. Dis his tx change 2100g, 107.8mm, Moderate condition
  • Kopaki – still no signal, will keep looking .
  • 64 – South side of Purua reserve, Nightly activity of 11 hours.

New ONE dads:
From Lesley and Yagi’s finds in April.

  • Tahi – At the back of Alisons’ farm, east of Purua reserve.  12.5 hours of activity.
  • Rua – He has got straight into nesting (this was the boy found with 2 females in April). His nest is in the hollow base of a totara at the back of Alisons’ farm.  Approx 40 days nesting on 31/5/23. 3 hours activity.
  • Macky –  This is the boy  often heard near Lee McGrath’s house (sometimes under it!). 12.5 hours activity.
  • Derek  – At the back of McGraths’ farm. 13.5 hours activity

Trapping/ toxin pulses

May catches: Stoats 3, Weasels 2, Cats 0, Rats 112, Hedgehogs 3, Possums 4.

Manaia Landcare have started  work in preparation for  the  controlled kiwi saver pulse that is due on Manaia. This is absolutely crucial in cleaning out the trap shy stoats that have built up in the area in the past few years.

 Thanks to the NRC, Kiwi Coast and our Proud Supporters 



Todd Hamilton

Backyard Kiwi Project Manager

Whangarei Heads Landcare Forum

M 021 1145 385




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