Loss of 11 kiwi chicks sad blow for reserve
Archived content: This media release was accurate on the date of publication.
IntroductionNews that 11 kiwi chicks have been killed by a predator at the private Warrenheip reserve near Karapiro is a sad blow, says Minister of Conservation Kate Wilkinson.
Date: 24 March 2010 Source: Office of the Minister of Conservation
News that 11 kiwi chicks have been killed by a predator at the private Warrenheip reserve near Karapiro is a sad blow, says Minister of Conservation Kate Wilkinson.
Department of Conservation staff visiting the reserve to undertake transmitter replacements discovered the dead birds, with early indications suggesting either a cat or large ferret is responsible for the attacks.
Two remaining kiwi in the reserve, which is surrounded by a predator-proof fence, have been rescued and transferred to Rainbow Springs in Rotorua.
"The reserve has been pest-free for a number of years and to have 11 of 13 chicks killed is devastating for everyone involved in this recovery programme.
"Kiwi are incredibly vulnerable when young and a lot of time and effort goes in to protecting and raising the chicks before they are big enough to fend for themselves.
"Department staff will be working to find out how a predator managed to enter the reserve to ensure it can continue the good work that has been achieved there already."
About 65 kiwi chicks have been successfully raised in the reserve since 2002 and transferred back to their home forests.
All 11 dead kiwi were brought to the reserve from Tongariro Forest with the blessing of Ngati Hikairo and Tuwharetoa Iwi.
Kiwi chicks raised in the wild have about a five percent chance of survival.