In 2006, Enviro Research, in association with the Whakamanu Wildlife Trust, embarked upon a new restoration protection which returned over 70 kiwi chicks to Waimarino Forest, west of Raetihi, over a six year period (2006-2012).
The forest, at 14000ha, is a commercial pine plantation containing several thousand hectares of indigenous forest reserve. A significant population of N.I. brown kiwi exist within the forest, and in an effort to ensure their long-term survival and breeding success the company conducted “Operation Nest Egg” to release chicks into reserve areas and followed their progress, dispersal and survival though to adulthood. The population was boosted by over 50%, and management recommendations resulted from the research project.
Top Image: Local kaumatua blesses the return of seven juvenile kiwis into Waimarino Forest.