The National Kiwi Hatchery in Rotorua has welcomed their 2000th brown kiwi chick.

The long-awaited arrival was scheduled to happen from anytime yesterday afternoon right through to today, with a livestream set up of the little egg.

Then in the early hours of this morning, a small beak could be seen protruding from the surface.

Slowly the hole grew bigger and bigger before a small fluffy brown kiwi fell out to make its world debut.

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The first-in-the-world live stream followed the 2000th egg in its journey to become the newest kiwi celebrity.

A small break can be seen coming out of the shell. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery
A small break can be seen coming out of the shell. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery

The egg was laid somewhere between 75 and 78 days ago.

The National Kiwi Hatchery Aotearoa, at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua, is the leading kiwi hatchery in the world, incubating and hatching over 130 kiwi chicks each year.

Out of every 100 kiwi eggs laid in burrows in the forest, only five kiwi chicks will make it to adulthood.

By hatching the kiwi eggs in safety at the hatchery and caring for them until they reach a "stoat-proof" weight of 1kg, their survival rate increases to 65 percent.

The National Kiwi Hatchery Aotearoa received their first kiwi egg in 1995.

The baby kiwi makes a break for it. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery
The baby kiwi makes a break for it. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery
The bird emerges from the shell. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery
The bird emerges from the shell. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery

After the chick has hatched, the team at the National Kiwi Hatchery will give it a full health check-up and then place it in a specially designed hatcher.

After two days the chick will be moved to a brooder box - a creche for baby kiwi that's a nice safe, warm place to grow up without having to worry about predators.

After being cleaned up, the bird sleeps in its incubated room. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery
After being cleaned up, the bird sleeps in its incubated room. Photo / National Kiwi Hatchery

At three weeks old, the chick will be released into an outdoor enclosure mimicking natural forest conditions, staying there until it grows to one kilogram in weight.

After four to five months it will be returned to the wild, big enough to fend for itself in the face of any predators.

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Rainbow Springs is owned and operated by Ngāi Tahu Tourism, which is also the National Kiwi Hatchery's biggest sponsor.