Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

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Paul Gibson
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Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:49 am
Location: Wanganui

Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Paul Gibson » Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:12 pm

Back to work today for us, after six days of enjoyable road trip. Coming right down from Raglan to North Taranaki via the coastal road was so good, and many harbours and estuaries to look at, and small sea-side settlements I had never heard of. I was amazed at how good the roads were, mostly double lane sealed from Kawhia through to North Taranaki, yet hardly a car on the road. We visited the Bridal Veil & Marokopa falls, both spectacular to view.

Interesting to find around Kawhia peafowl, turkey and guineafowl, all seemingly semi-feral, being some distance from human habitation, and not just one group, but a number of each at different places. In one place we saw a white turkey, I don’t think this is common? Saw pairs of eastern rosellas in a number of places, and kingfishers were everywhere. Few arctic waders on the Raglan harbour, saw just 3 godwit, although there were big numbers of SIPOs. On the Kawhia harbour there were good numbers of godwits, viewed a high-tide roost with 200 plus birds. Spoonbills seemed common, found on every estuary we came to, including 15 at Mokau in North Taranaki.
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Davidthomas
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Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Davidthomas » Thu Sep 29, 2016 2:56 pm

Hi Paul, roughly where were the Guineafowl? Would be interested to know.
Paul Gibson
Posts: 116
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:49 am
Location: Wanganui

Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Paul Gibson » Thu Sep 29, 2016 4:22 pm

Hi David, The general area where the Guineafowl were seen near Kawhia is shown on the map below. I'm not sure now of the exact location - as all new territory for us - maybe my next camera will have GPS on it! We also saw a group some 2-3 kms upstream (from SH3) on the road beside the Mokau River.
We see some semi-feral groups around Whanganui, and for one group I was able to trace their origin. A farmer accounting client of ours has them around her farm, and she says they come from a neighbouring farmer who breeds them, and then seems to let them go when numbers get too high. From our observations such semi-feral groups only last a few years and don't seem to be self-sustaining long-term.

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RussCannings
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Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby RussCannings » Sat Oct 01, 2016 1:15 pm

Thanks for the report Paul,

I've driven that road a fair amount in the past year and haven't come across any guineafowl so they may be recent releases/escapes but who knows. White turkeys are common among domestic stock so likely not far-removed from a farm somewhere. Plenty of feral turkeys in that area though.

Glad you've enjoyed that area--certainly deserves more visits and attention!

Russ C
Paul Gibson
Posts: 116
Joined: Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:49 am
Location: Wanganui

Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Paul Gibson » Mon Oct 03, 2016 7:48 pm

Thanks Russ. I agree that it is an area that deserves more attention.
Ian Southey
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Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Ian Southey » Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:39 pm

I have been a sceptic about genuinely wild Guineafowl in New Zealand for some time. It looks like they may well exist after all.

Ian
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Neil Fitzgerald
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Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Neil Fitzgerald » Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:30 am

White turkeys probably made up a few % of the birds on the family farm at Waitomo, which meant there was usually one or two around. For some reason, curiosity value I guess, they tended to be spared from shooting.
Granthod
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Re: Birding road trip - Raglan/Kawhia/Mokau

Postby Granthod » Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:49 pm

Paul, which part of the harbour/ beach do you find godwits?

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