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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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October 13th, 2020

September Report

Busy Spring 

Sorry I’m late on this report – it has been an extra busy month or so. Helen and I had a week away and attended the National Kiwi Hui. It was a great opportunity to catch up with kiwi folk and hear updates. Thanks to Kiwis for Kiwi for funding and organising the hui and a big thanks to Jess Scimgeour (Head of Kiwi Recovery Group) and Tamsin Ward Smith for all their superb organisation and hard work on the ground as the majority of the K4K folks were stranded by lockdown in Auckland. There was also a workshop for kiwi handler trainers before the hui that was very useful.

The Northland Kiwi Forum working group has met twice recently to help catch up on a backlog of work.  I will forward the minutes when they are finalised.

It has been a busy spring for the kiwi too with chicks hatching and stoat control going up a gear.  Martin has been working away getting Manaia ready for a 1080 pulse in the bait station network starting this week. This will clean out any trap shy stoats in the area – Prof Kim King emphasised how crucial this is in a fantastic presentation at the hui – to see it log onto the Kiwis for kiwi website as a kiwi practitioner. Without these pulses stoat trapping alone becomes a waste of time after 3 years.

Upcoming events

  • Weed Action Whangarei Heads weed control workshop – 31/10/20
  • NRC and Kiwi Coast – Northland Pest Control workshop – 1/11/20
  • Kiwis for kiwi – Northland Kiwi Hui – 6-8/11/20

See Kiwi Coast website for details

  • Remember to keep the evening of the 4/12/20 free for our annual BBQ Conservation Christmas Get together.                                                                                         

“Kiwi Link” proved again – again!

Last month I mentioned that Malaika had crossed the “Kiwi Link” area and headed past the end of Taraunui Road into the Hancock’s Whanui pine block.  Well seems she prefers things better back at the South side of the Kiwi Link because she has walked the 6-10km back!

Backyard Kiwi Predator Control Program :

September catches in the predator trapping network: 1 stoat, 2 weasel, 4 cats, 63 rats, 11 hedgehogs and 0 possums.  Female stoats will be raising their litters now and they will start dispersing in a month or so (unless they are near Manaia and will be dead).


Wally’s chicks

What your radio tracked Backyard Kiwi have been up to:

Whangarei Heads.

  • Ross– Since the flooding he has remained up the high end of the valley at Pepi road.  11 hours nightly activity.
  • Hancock – Still no signal since 4/8/20 even with wide and repeated searches.
  • Teina –  He is still settled in the Owhiwa Road pine block.  11 hours nightly activity. When I was looking for Hancock I found him in a shallow burrow by himself and took the opportunity to change his transmitter band – he was a fat 2650g (cf 2100g back in March) so he seems very happy leading the single life at this stage!(see pic)
  • Malaika – Has returned to Owhiwa Road after walking across the Kiwi Link and back. 12 hours activity.
  • Beach Girl – She still seems settled at the Plants’ place on Taraunui Road. 10.5 hours activity.
  • Wally – Has successfully hatched two chicks after 87 days nesting in the pampas at the end of Campbell Road.  See attached pictures – they were both healthy and active and ready to head out by themselves. They have been ID chipped and DNA sampled. Dad was down to 1800g after his nesting stint – he had been as fat as 3250g back in his single days . It shows just how hard these kiwi have to work at nesting.
  • Harikoa – In usual area of wetland/pines at the NE end of Campbell Road. 12 hours activity.
  • Pakipaki – Usual area in pampas/pines in the McLeod Bay Horse Paddock. 10.5 hours.
  • Whitu – Nesting 94 days now. Frank has been checking his data stream daily and it shows that the first chick hatched 14 days ago and we are waiting on an increase in activity after his second hatch before checking him.

Rarewarewa/Purua- ONE Dads

Finally a chick to transfer!

  • Nick– Usual area Lovell’s bush, Nesting 61 days 1/10/20, 4.5 hours activity.
  • Moeahu– Near the peak above the quarry. 12.5 hours activity.
  • Sancho– In paddock north of quarry. 11 hours activity.
  • Kimposter – Hatched his first chick “LC2010” who was transferred to Limestone Island on 10/10/20 – see pic. Dad still on second egg.
  • Kimposter’s chick LC2010

  • Ngutu roa – Usual area SW reserve. Nesting 32 days 21/9/20, 3.5 hours activity.
  • Ngaro– Usual area above the airstrip, Nesting 9 days on 21/9/20, 3.5 hours activity.
  • Moondust– Nesting in paddock burrow up the gut behind the Irvine Road woolshed. Nesting 41 days on 21/9/20, 2.5 hours activity.
  • Gorgeous – His nest on the south side of Hawkins’ Hill failed. The nest got very wet in the flooding and the first egg had already gone rotten and been kicked out by dad.

Cheers Todd



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