Two kiwi chicks have been found in the wild in Wellington, marking the first reported wild births of the iconic bird in the nation’s capital in more than 150 years. This discovery is historic for conservation efforts in New Zealand wildlife, representing the first instance of Kiwi birds born in over a century.
11 Kiwis Released in 2022
This remarkable advancement comes after the Capital Kiwi Project, an ambitious project that saw the release of 11 kiwis in November 2022. These birds were released in Makara, which is a large area of mountainous farmland west of Wellington’s central business district. Here, kiwis have been provided with a safe refuge by intensive predator trapping, leading to the recent discovery of two kiwi birds born in over a century in the New Zealand wildlife in Wellington, marking the first reported wild births of the iconic bird in the nation’s capital in more than 150 years.
Two Chicks Confirmed
The Capital Kiwi Project team used radio-tracking technology to establish the presence of two chicks after months of waiting. This result excites conservationists because it shows that restoring kiwis to the Wellington region after a protracted absence is feasible, offering hope for the recovery of this endangered species.
An Important Turning Point
“The Capital Kiwi Project has reached a very important milestone,” Deirdre McGifford, the project manager, stated. “It’s a testament to the hard work and dedication of our team and all our partners, and it gives us great hope for the future of kiwis in Wellington.”
Wellington’s outstanding kiwi breeding program supports the nation’s audacious Predator-Free 2050 ambition. With their ability to seriously jeopardize the future of native species like kiwis, imported mammalian predators like stoats, possums, and rats are the target of this project aiming to protect and restore the populations of this endangered species.
The Project’s Next Steps
The team behind the Capital Kiwi Project will keep a careful eye on the chicks and take further precautions against predators to make sure they survive. In the future, they intend to release additional kiwis in order to progressively increase the population and create a flourishing kiwi community in Wellington, contributing to the preservation and revitalization of New Zealand wildlife.