More young kiwi are moving to live on Whangarei's coast.

Pataua North Landcare has released a further three kiwi into the local 800 hectare predator controlled area.

The new birds, called Piper, Quincy and Gail, let go last Sunday join the 10 released in May, some of which are already nesting.

More than 180 people watched the wild kiwi released near where a bachelor bird named Brian has taken up residence. There are hopes Brian will pair up with Piper or Gail.


"We are absolutely thrilled to bring three more kiwi into our growing kiwi population. It's a dream come true to see our local kiwi thriving and beginning to breed," John Craig from Pataua North Landcare said.

The three juveniles were raised in the kiwi creche on Matakohe-Limestone Island in Whangarei Harbour.

Kiwi leave the crèche once they weigh around 1kg and can fight off stoats which kill 95 per cent of chicks before they reach their first birthday in non-predator controlled areas.

Todd Hamilton, from Backyard Kiwi, was up at dawn on Sunday with Matakohe-Limestone Island ranger Emma Craig to catch the three kiwi.

He said Piper was named after Piper Mortimer, a member of the Lovell family from whose farm the kiwi chick originally came from, Mr Hamilton said.

Piper Mortimer was at Pataua North to help release her namesake.

The kiwi will be monitored by trained locals using radio tracking equipment.
Neighbouring communities at Taheke, Whareora and Parua Bay have also established predator controlled areas with support from the Kiwi Coast and Northland Regional Council.

Kiwi Coast co-ordinator Ngaire Tyson said community-led projects from Bream Head to Whananaki would eventually connect to link up into one giant predator controlled network.

The Pataua North Landcare Group formed in 2009 to work with the Northland Regional Council on pest control over approximately 800ha, involving 20 landowners.