Fruit fly-infested chillies, dried frogs and a tiger tooth are among the weird goods travellers have been trying to get past New Zealand border staff in the last month.

Burgeoning visitor arrivals in May have seen quarantine officers intercepting more than 6700 items of "biosecurity interest" from arriving passengers, the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) said.

There were 176,700 visitors flocking through New Zealand borders in May - a 10 per cent increase from May 2014.

Recent finds included a bunch of undeclared fruit fly-infested chillies seized from a French passenger arriving at Auckland Airport, who received a $400 fine.


Another passenger, from Bangkok, had declared dried frogs as "food".

A tiger tooth was seized at Wellington Airport from an Indian family and a haul of mung beans, chillies, eggs and apples were nabbed from another family who declared only pickles and bread when they arrived in Christchurch from India.

One passenger tried to bring in almost 19kg of bananas, chillis, cabbage and other fresh food when they arrived from Singapore.

Booming numbers of international visitors increased the risk of unwanted diseases and pests in New Zealand, MPI border clearance manager Andrew Spelman said.

The interceptions showed the border controls were working, but also "rammed home" the message MPI needed to stay vigilant, he said.

"It's one of the reasons why MPI is working on a programme to enhance its border controls for passengers following the Government's decision to increase funding in the recent budget," he said.