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Yellow-crowned parakeet (kakariki) chicks have been spotted on Mana Island, just seven months after 26 adult birds were transferred there from Te Kakaho Island in the Chetwode Island group, Malborough Sounds. Friends of Mana Island volunteers, who have been monitoring the birds since they arrived on the island, reported their first confirmed sighting of at least three chicks in a kingfisher hole during the weekend of January 8 and 9. Download the PDF to read the full...

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Fairy prions hatched in the Marlborough Sounds have been duped into believing Mana Island is their home. The first of 240 chicks transferred to the island from Takapourewa (Stephens Island) in the Marlborough Sounds over the past three years has returned, heralding the success of a project to recreate a vibrant ecosystem on the island. It is the first time fairy prions have been successfully transferred to another location. Download the PDF to read the full...

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Working stealthily both night and day, members of Friends of Mana Island (FOMI), Ngati Kuia, Ngati Toa and DOC staff captured 25 yellow crowned parakeets and 80 flax weevils from islands in the Marlborough Sounds to transfer to Mana Island. For three days in May they used almost invisible mist nets to trap both male and female parakeets on Chetwode Island. The birds were held in a temporary aviary then placed in wooden carrying cases and flown to Mana Island. “It was amazing to hear the kakariki calls in the Manuka trees upon their release in their new home,” said Jason Christenson, ranger on Mana Island. Two hundred nesting boxes were carefully constructed by students at Plimmerton School and the Ucol Conservation Corps in Levin for the homecoming. FOMI volunteers placed the boxes in vegetation along Bush Valley to await their new occupants. More than 380,000 trees have been planted by volunteers on the island since the mid-1980s, providing plenty of food for the birds. Download the PDF to read the full...

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Return of kakariki to Mana Island


Posted on Sep 5, 2013

A member of the parrot family, the yellow-crowned parakeet was once common on mainland New Zealand, but it is now mainly confined to predator-free islands and large tracts of forest on the mainland. Notable for its colourful bright green, red and yellow plumage, it loves to nest in holes in branches and trunks of trees, crevices in cliffs, and in burrows in the ground. Kakariki are usually solitary or found in pairs, although in autumn and winter the birds may form small flocks. In flight they make a loud rapid chatter and may also chatter and babble when feeding. The yellow-crown parakeet or kakariki was once part of Mana Island’s ecosystem. Its bones were found in midden (rubbish heap) material on Mana. It is one of the bird species recommended by the Department for reintroduction to the island. We have already seen the introduction of fairy prion, diving petrel, speckled skink and flax weevil to the island. Their return has been made possible by the removal of mice, and a native forest replanting project that is being undertaken by Friends of Mana Island. There is now abundant food for kakariki, including kanuka nuts, coprosma berries, and the extensive grass seed. Twenty six birds, eleven female and fifteen male birds, have been relocated from Te Kakaho Island in the Chetwood group, Marlborough Sounds which hosts the closest genetically-suitable population to Mana Island. The Chetwood Islands population is thriving and will easily replenish itself. Download the full...

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