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Rare Kiwi Flight

20120619_WN_S1015650_0003 - A Rowi Kiwi is relocated to Mana Island for the first time in the last 100 years.

This is the first time that the Rowi Kiwis have been in the North Island in hundreds of years. The Department of Conservation (DoC) removed 20 Rowi eggs from the Ökärito forest to protect them from predators - stoats and other introduced pests. After the eggs hatched the chicks were raised on Motuara Island in the Marlborough Sounds.

“We expect that the absence of predator pressure, better breeding conditions and less competition for territories will ensure that the Mana Island rowi produce a high number of chicks that can eventually become part of the home population in Ökärito (South Island),” says DoC.

The Ngai Tahu hapü on the West Coast, Kati Mähaki ki Makaawhio, are kaitiaki – guardians for the rowi on the Coast. While the kiwis are on Mana Island, Ngäti Toa Rangatira will take over the kaitiaki role for the small isolated colony of Kiwis.

This is an important project for DoC and the Air Force is delighted to be able to support DoC in relocating and establishing the rare rowi Kiwis on Mana Island.



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