Living in a kiwi zone? Here's some stuff we all need to know...
In areas with no pest control, just 5% percent of hatched kiwi chicks make it to adulthood
Domestic dogs are a huge problem for kiwi
One dog left to roam can wipe out an entire local population
Dogs kill adult birds - the breeding population
They are part of why Northland kiwi have a life expectancy of just 13 years compared to nearly 50 in other parts of the country
Things we can do:
Control our dogs so that they never meet a kiwi
Have our dogs kiwi aversion trained regularly, remembering it's no guarantee
Domestic and feral cats are also a problem for kiwi survival.
Cats kill kiwi chicks
Cats kill other native bird species
Living in a kiwi zone, here's some things we can do:
Keep them in at night
Feed them well
Neuter or spay our cats
When our cats die, consider not replacing them
Vehicles kill kiwi
DoC have had 75 reported killed by cars on our peninsula (Redcliffes Rd / Rangitane Rd / Opito Bay Rd) since 1992. Who knows how many have been unreported
Driving at night, let's slow down and keep a close eye out for them on the road
In areas where they aren't controlled, stoats kill more than 50% of all kiwi chicks
They also take a big toll on other native birds, weta and lizards
Possums eat kiwi eggs and kill adult kiwi and chicks
They also prey on other native bird's eggs and chicks
They eat kiwi habitat and compete with kiwi for burrows
Rats and mice are food for the kiwi's predators and their presence helps to keep populations of cats, stoats and other mustelids high
Ship rats are climbers and eat native birds eggs and chicks
They eat insects and the fruit and seeds that feed birds and allow the forest to regenerate
Still with us? One last thing...
If your dog starts barking at a upturned dinghy on the beach lead him/her away quietly.
There's a good chance it's a kiwi resting up under there.
It happened at Opito Bay this week, not the first time...