Kaimanawa Forest Park Giant Snails, Birds & Bats

Kaimanawa Forest Park Natural History.

Powelliphanta marchanti, an indigenous land snail, is found in the headwaters of the Rangitikei River. DOC is putting particular effort into protecting these large, unique creatures which are very vulnerable to predation by possums and rats. Insect life is diverse but is most noticeable above the bushline.

The most common native birds here are the kereru (NZ pigeon), fantail (piwakawaka), bellbird (korimako), rifleman (titipounamu), North Island robin (toutouwai), grey warbler (riroriro), whitehead (popokotea), kakariki (parakeet) and morepork (ruru). Falcon (kareraea), pipit (pihoihoi), tui, fernbird (matata), kaka, and black and pied shags (kawau tuawhenua and karuhiruhi) are present in lesser numbers.

In summer you might hear shining or long-tailed cuckoos (pipiwharauroa or koekoea) which fly in each year from wintering grounds in the Pacific. The rare blue duck (whio) are especially adapted to fast flowing rivers; they camouflage well, but can be spotted by following the male's whistle call. Low numbers of kiwi remain in Kaimanawa Forest Park. All birdlife is protected. Please remember that dogs are a real threat to many bird species (particularly kiwi and blue duck) and must be kept under control at all times.

Small colonies of short-tailed and long-tailed bats occur in northern and western parts of Kaimanawa Forest. Long-tailed bats can sometimes be seen at dusk flitting around in search of insects.


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