What parrots might you find in Tawharanui?
A nature tour from Auckland to Tawharanui is magical for many reasons. Perhaps your favourite part will be the abundance of lush New Zealand plantlife, or the smell of the forest and sound of the waves on the beach, or perhaps, your favourite part will be the gorgeous parrots you might find there.
Here are a few of the awesome parrots you might spot during a Habitat Tours excursion to Tawharanui.
The kaka is a large bird that’s from the same family as the cheeky kea, which helps explain their boisterous and entertaining antics. These birds are often spotted socialising in the early morning and late evening, and are generally only seen in forest areas around the North and South Islands.
There are an estimated 1,000 – 5,000 kaka left in New Zealand, which makes spotting one an even more special experience.
Red crowned parakeets
The red crowned parakeet – known as kakariki in Maori – is a smaller parrot that is mostly bright green with a distinctive red streak across its forehead.
They nest in holes in trees, but it’s not uncommon to see them foraging for berries, insects and seeds on the ground. Along with the yellow crowned parakeet, they are the only native New Zealand bird to be held and bred in captivity, which is helping to improve population numbers of these gorgeous birds.
An eastern rosella has the bright and colourful attractive appearance of a parrot, yet they do not have the usual chatty temperament of parrots and are not considered to be good pets.
The eastern rosella was introduced to New Zealand in the 1900s, and is now reasonably common throughout the country. They can be quite loud, so you may hear them before you spot them, and spotting them shouldn’t be a problem with their bright red and green plumage, and distinctive cream-coloured cheeks!
Pests get what’s coming to them in Wellington
As a company strongly invested in New Zealand and our many species of pests, we know all about their damaging and destructive behaviour.
While most New Zealand pests might fall to traps set out by the Department of Conservation, one Wellington example recently got another kind of surprise, according to a NZ Herald article.
Goodnature is a local conservation business in Wellington, and when thieves broke into a company car one night in August, they weren’t expecting to find an incredibly stinky surprise in the back seat.
Company director Robbie van Dam had left a box of experimental bottles of oil in the back seat of his car. He believes the burglars spotted the chemical symbols on the side of the box, then broke in hoping to find drug-making materials. Instead, the oils inside were actually extracted from the anal glands of stoats – and were remarkably pungent.
Should just one drop of the noxious oil escape one of the bottles, the stench would last for weeks, even in a fresh-air environment.
There’s no word on what the thieves did with the box of oils, but van Dam at least got a laugh out of thinking it may have thoroughly ruined the thieves’ plans.
The stinky oils are an experiment in attracting pests into self-resetting traps. The idea is to catch and destroy pests such as rats, stoats and possums to help rid New Zealand of its predators. They even smell so bad that Goodnature only works with them at an off-site facility to avoid any potential mishaps that would make working at their usual site almost impossible (as had happened once a couple of years ago).
One way or another, a few more of New Zealand’s pests got what was coming to them by a wonderful conservation group!
Tristan Cullen - Passionate Conservationist