The Civil Aviation Authority says a microlight plane forced to land on the beach at Tamaterau (right) had its propeller damaged by bird strike while in the air.

The aircraft's nose was further damaged when the pilot hit shallow water while landing on the mudflats at low tide on April 9.

A CAA spokesman said the pilot made the emergency landing because the damage to the propeller caused the aircraft to judder violently.

Soon after landing, the plane was dragged on to a beachside reserve and was lifted from the site by a helicopter later in the day.