17 March 2013

Three Endemics and an Introduction

We're away from home again, and gadding around New Zealand.  After imposing ourselves on relatives in Auckland, we went up to "Birder's Rest", run by Detlef and Carol Davies in Kerikeri.

We went spotlighting with Carol, and were delighted to see five Kiwis.  The pics here don't really  do justice to the birds or the occasion.

Earlier, there had been a Morepork in the garden to welcome us, too !

Today we pitched up in rainy Turangi, on the Tongariro River.  We're staying at the "The Creel Lodge".  Their website has some details of where to look along the famous fishing river for the sought-after-by-foreign-birders Blue Ducks.

As unofficial "Rain Deities" we were pleased to spy a pair of Blue Duck a couple of kilometers upstream from our accommodation.

Until today there had been hardly any rain in New Zealand since mid-December 2012, and an "official drought" was declared a couple of days ago.  It feels like either that government declaration, or our presence has brought on today's downpours.

Some (introduced) California Quail near the edge of the river.

I commanded to rain to stop while we had the cameras out, but it didn't work. Still, at the moment New Zealand needs all the rain it can get.


  1. Great species here , John! I'd love to see the Kiwi and Blue Duck. They look so unique. Hope one day I can make it to NZ.

  2. John.....................I envy your lifestyle. I really do.

  3. Seeing a Kiwi itself a big lottery and getting a photo of it doesn't make justice to the fellow birding community. Nice shots of the Blue Duck John.

  4. John, thanks for the latest post and pics, I'm really enjoying following your travels all around the globe, and you seem to be visiting all the places that I want to visit when I retire! Amazing how much I thought of Raymond Ching's work when I saw your pics of the Blue Ducks and the Morepork- hoping to see more.

  5. Hi Everyone,

    Thanks for the kind comments.... I'm sorry to have been absent here for so long... but I'll be trying to "catch up" with news of our recent trip as soon as possible....