South Kaipara Landcare is made up of residents who are passionate about the local environment. We have a small committee and are always on the lookout for new members. If you would like to join us on the committee or as a member please contact us at email@example.com
Bittern flies from the Waikato to check out South Head wetlands
An Australasian Bittern, or Matuku, recently tagged at Whangamarino Wetland in the Waikato has been tracked investigating wetlands 115km away in South Head.
The Bittern was caught and tagged as part of this years GPS study led by Dr Emma Williams at DoC. The study involved attaching GPS tracking devices to 5 male bitterns across New Zealand to date. The birds were captured in September/October, so have been tracked for up to 90 days.
The information gathered during the study is used to understand more about the birds and how they can be protected. Experts estimate the total NZ Bittern population to be less than 1000 nationally. The threat classification of species was increased from Nationally vulnerable to Nationally Critical in 2016 because of research that showed the species decline is particularly steep (40 % decline in distribution in the last 40 years).
Several of the birds tagged in this years study travelled surprisingly long distances. One of the Canterbury birds spent two weeks investigating breeding sites at Lake Ellesmere before flying 310km to Wairau Harbour in Blehnheim.
See the map below to find out where the Whangamarino wetland bird spent his October vacation.
10 Tips for attracting birds to your backyard
Here are 10 things that you can do that could help bring native birds back to your garden.
Te Rau Puriri (Regional Park)
Phil and the team at Te Rau Puriri have recently launched a series of youtube clips about Te Rau Puriri. There are plenty of local faces featured in the clips, including previous owners the Smeaton’s and McLeod’s who share their memories and stories of the farms.