It was a touching and humbling moment for Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre when one of its volunteers presented them with an artwork of falcon Hatupatu.
Hatupatu, the well-known falcon that called Rotorua's Government Gardens his home, died recently after being hit by a car.
He was one of the longest-living male falcons of known age in the wild.
Local artist and Wingspan volunteer Stacy Rogers-Scott says he completed the hand stencilled artwork of Hatupatu about two days after hearing the falcon had died.
"I thought it was very sad and that this was a way to celebrate his life and the accomplishments he achieved."
A silent auction for this original A3 artwork is now open for bidding, closing at 5pm on June 12.
He says having an artwork of his up for auction was both cool and daunting, as he has never put any of his artwork out like this before.
Stacy says the Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre is a great cause to get behind.
"I don't know where our birds of prey population would be without Wingspan. They've done so much for them, they are the unsung heroes."
In his role as a volunteer at Wingspan, Stacy helps with gardening duties and gets to help with the flying displays, which is a highlight for him.
He says he enjoys everything about volunteering there - "It's an honour being able to work that closely with the team and the birds."
Wingspan executive director Debbie Stewart says being given the artwork of Hatupatu by Stacy was a complete surprise.
She says they were very humbled by his gesture and that Stacy has given great attention to detail in his artwork of Hatupatu, such as the registered leg bands and capturing his stance/posture.
Debbie says money raised from the auction will contribute to the centre's conservation programme.
She says they have had some bids already and are warmed by the generosity and support of people.
Hatupatu hatched in November 2013, captive bred from permanently injured falcons at Wingspan, and was named after the famous Te Arawa warrior of local history.
He was one of seven falcon chicks transferred from Wingspan to Rotorua Museum, where he was blessed by kaumātua Anaru Rangiheuea, marking the first city release of a threatened species in New Zealand.
Releasing falcons from the roof of the museum was about trialling an urban falcon release, increasing public awareness and at the heart of the programme, about wildlife engagement for people with nature.
In Hatupatu's first year he was seen by hundreds of thousands of people, with tens of thousands of volunteer hours logged keeping an eye on him.
Hatupatu had an eventful life for a falcon, and in his seven years he fathered 13 chicks of his own.
- Bids can be made privately through Facebook messenger, direct email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or onsite at Wingspan during visitor hours.