Great news! Local resident Sally who has been controlling predators and restoring her property in Northcote has recently shared this lovely news with us. A kākā has returned to her kohekohe dominated backyard and has been playing around with her bird feeders! Kākā have since been seen by a number of people near Hillcrest, Chatswood, Rangatira & Fernglen. It’s great to be seeing these more frequently on the Shore and hope they visit and one day can settle down and have chicks in Kaipātiki. Please take note that while bird feeding is well-intentioned, it can cause a lot of serious problems if you put out the wrong things – including metabolic bone disease in kākā.
Sally has done the right thing, similar to advice given out by Forest and Bird. They recommend that half-cut oranges, apples and pears are nice option for kākā, as is sugar water – both of which have the benefit of attracting tui and silvereye.
Kākā are colourful, intelligent, large forest-dwelling parrots that are only found in New Zealand. The best thing you can do is keep a safe habitat for kākā (by trapping predators 🐀) and plant to support the greening of kaipātiki (i.e provide a variety of native plants for food and hollows for homes🌲). Kākā are used to working quite hard for their food, prying off bark and decaying material – helping to ensure healthy, thriving birds.
Keep up the great work everyone! If you want to get involved spotting native wildlife, or learn how you can better support and attract kākā in your backyard and reserves, join in our Bird Count activity during Citizen Science Month.