Engineers from the New Zealand Army performed a powerful haka when bidding farewell to Australians after spending weeks fighting the bushfires in Australia.

Before soldiers returned to New Zealand on Monday, a ceremony was held in their honour in appreciation of the efforts they have put in helping clear the fires on Kangaroo Island, off the coast of South Australia.

A video from the Department of Defence Australia shows parts of the ceremony, including a haka Kiwi soldiers performed to Australian representatives from the Defence Force and firefighting services.

Video footage showed the New Zealand soldiers performing a powerful haka to Australian defence force representatives and firefighting services. Photo / Australia Defence
Video footage showed the New Zealand soldiers performing a powerful haka to Australian defence force representatives and firefighting services. Photo / Australia Defence

Colonel Don Hogben from the Australian Army said that the New Zealand Defence Force gifted the local council a new New Zealand flag to be flown at the New Zealand war memorial in Penneshaw, Kangaroo Island.

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"Having New Zealand support Australia in this time of need during the bushfire crisis has been wonderful," Hogben said.

"It is always a pleasure to work with New Zealanders between their Defence Force and ours.

"The local community has been appreciative of the efforts of the Australian Defence Force but also our international friends - none more so than New Zealand. They have done great work over here."

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Hogben said it was another chapter of co-operation between the two countries.

On the behalf of the Australian Defence Force, he thanked all the Kiwi engineers for their "fantastic job" over the last few weeks and wished them the best in their future.

The New Zealand engineers were working as part of Operation Bushfire Assist, which is made up of three task forces in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.

Colonel Don Hogben from the Australian Army said the soldiers also gave the local council a flag to be flown at the New Zealand war memorial in Penneshaw, Kangaroo Island. Photo / Defence Australia
Colonel Don Hogben from the Australian Army said the soldiers also gave the local council a flag to be flown at the New Zealand war memorial in Penneshaw, Kangaroo Island. Photo / Defence Australia

On Kangaroo Island the joint task force was responsible for clearing roads, removing damaged fences, debris and trees and fixing signposts.

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They also helped provide civil agencies with rations and environmental health support.

In mid-January, a heartwarming image released by the New Zealand Defence Force showed two soldiers wrapping a distressed marsupial in a blanket.

NZDF members have seen first hand the disastrous impact the fires have caused on communities and wildlife, causing the death of 8000 koalas on Kangaroo Island alone.

They had the misfortune of removing dead wildlife from the fire aftermath, including kangaroos killed in the deadly fires that swept across the island.

Countries such as Papua New Guinea, Fiji, New Zealand, Singapore and Japan have been part of the effort to help Australia with the bushfires.

Since September, Australia has been battling bushfires that have killed 33 people and about 1 billion native animals, while 2500 homes and an area the size of Greece have been destroyed.