In the biggest project in its history, Queenstown's Kiwi Birdlife Park is building a new home for its most precious inhabitants.
The park is spending nearly $1million on the new kiwi house, which is now under construction on its northern boundary.
Park manager Paul Kavanagh said building work began last month, with the goal of moving the kiwi into their new home by the end of May.
The 178sq m facility had native planting, an incubation room, a food preparation area, toilets and an interpretation area.
The project anticipates construction noise and vibration from Skyline Queenstown's gondola redevelopment - granted consent last month - and a multi-level parking building approved in December.
Construction of the two Skyline projects is expected to begin later this year, and take at least four years to complete.
Mr Kavanagh said kiwi were "extremely sensitive'' to noise and vibrations, yet the existing buildings were only metres from the car park site.
The park's staff were excited the project was under way.
"We have had many years of negotiations with Skyline to try to find a solution to enable their development, whilst limiting any negative effects on the welfare of our wildlife, which is always our primary concern.''
Skyline had contributed to the cost of the new habitat, as well as a new fence on the park's western boundary and the planting of 5000 native trees for screening, he said.
Several other Queenstown businesses had been "amazing in their support'', but the park still had a funding shortfall for the project that it was now fundraising to make up.
Construction of the new habitat had been planned to avoid the kiwi breeding season beginning in the spring.