Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has named a kiwi chick about to hatch at
the Pukaha Mt Bruce National Wildlife Centre.
Ardern told St Anthony's School pupils from Pahiatua, who welcomed her with a powhiri on Thursday, that after her daughter Neve's birth she had been gifted a toy of the white kiwi Manukura which is housed at Pukaha Mt Bruce.
"She plays with the toy every day on the ninth floor of the Beehive," said the Prime Minister.
Ardern also accepted the honour of naming a kiwi chick expected to hatch in the next five days.
Ardern named the chick Koha Te Aroha in reference to Rangitāne's generous gift back to New Zealand of Pūkaha. Her daughter Neve's middle name is also Te Aroha.
Ardern got to see Manukura (the white kiwi) in the Kiwi House, to see the egg of a kiwi about to hatch and to hold a kiwi chick.
This was the Prime Minister's first visit to Pukaha Mount Bruce, in the Tararua district.
"Pukaha is an inspiring place that does so much important work for our native species and I felt privileged to visit Manukura [the white kiwi], hold a little kiwi and say hello to one about to hatch.
"It's also incredibly significant that Rangitāne have decided to gift the reserve to the people of New Zealand, ensuring the beautiful towering native forest is a safe haven for our native flora and fauna and also for every New Zealander to enjoy."