Only a half hour boat journey from downtown Auckland, Motutapu Island is one of the latest ‘takahē islands’. Since 1994 the Motutapu Restoration Trust has been restoring parts of the island in partnership with the Department of Conservation. Volunteers have grown and planted many thousands of native trees and shrubs, controlled weeds, developed walking tracks and undertaken other conservation work.
Four takahē were introduced onto Motutapu in August 2011, when the island was declared free of introduced animal pests. The biggest transfer of takahē thus far saw an additional nine takahē moved from the Burwood Takahē Centre to the island in November 2012. All of the birds transferred to Motutapu were young birds so it was good to hear that some had successfully hatched chicks as early as November 2013.
The latest from Motutapu Island
Motutapu Island is now home to 20 takahē, some of which are paired up in twos and others are in trios and foursomes.
The swampy areas on Motutapu are the favoured habitat for building nests on the island and everyone is anticipating a good 2015 breeding season.