New to New Zealand

General birdwatching discussion, help with bird identification, and all other things relating to wild birds and birding in NZ that don't fit in one of the other forums.
Scottish Crossbill
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:39 pm
Location: UK

New to New Zealand

Postby Scottish Crossbill » Sun Mar 10, 2019 1:11 am

Hi Birders. I'm a UK birder coming to work in NZ (hopefully) for 8 months starting in May. I'll be based in Tauranga. I've visited Oz before but never NZ. My main interest will be trying to catch up with as many endemics as possible and a couple of pelagic trips (if my stomach can manage it!).
Can people answer a few questions for me?
1) Is there any local birding club I could join?
2) which field guide is considered the best for NZ birds?
3) can people suggest good local sites to get me started?
4) Ultimately I will want to do a bit of a tour of North and South Islands (And Stewart Island). Can people make any suggestions about the best time to do a 2-3 week tour of NZ bearing in mind that I'll only be here May until end of January-ish?
Your help is greatly appreciated and I look forward to meeting you soon. :D
Cheers
Steve
lloydesler
Posts: 29
Joined: Sun Jun 22, 2014 6:39 pm

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby lloydesler » Sun Mar 10, 2019 7:56 am

Hi Steve lots of useful bird books. A good cheap, general one with all the land and freshwater species is obtainable from me $6.50 including postage. It is a folding sheet on waterproof card with 10 A5 panels. Widely used by schools and tour groups. Just illustrations and names but no information about size, call, distribution etc.
Cheers. Lloyd Esler esler@southnet.co.nz
User avatar
Neil Fitzgerald
Site Admin
Posts: 3254
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 10:20 am
Location: Hamilton, New Zealand
Contact:

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby Neil Fitzgerald » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:21 am

On our links page find Birds New Zealand near the top. Local branches meet regularly and may have outings of interest.
I think around November is a good time for a tour of the North. Beat the Christmas crowds and there will be Arctic waders as well as local spp easy to find. I'm sure you'll get lots of site specific advice as your plans evolve.
The old Heather and Robertson guides are still pretty good.
User avatar
David Riddell
Posts: 765
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2009 3:46 pm

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby David Riddell » Sun Mar 10, 2019 10:28 am

Hi Steve, Further to Neil's comments, for the Tauranga area, shorebirds are probably the strong point. Maketu and Little Waihi are easily accessible from there, browse through the discussions in these forums for more info (use the Search tool). Pelagics are also promoted on this site fairly regularly, so keep an eye out for them, they're well worth doing, even if your stomach is a bit delicate, as mine is! For forest birds, you could try Otanewainuku (http://kiwitrust.org). Or if you have time to go a bit further afield, Tiritiri Matangi is arguably the easiest place in the northern North Island to see a big range of endemics.
As for best time of year, as Neil says late spring is a time when most birds are active, the days are a good length, and you'll miss the peak of the tourist season. Do allow yourself plenty of time - my wife and I did a two-week road trip down to Stewart Island from near Hamilton in late November/early December, with no stops of any significance in the North Island at all, and though we had a ball and saw lots of birds it was a real rush! NZ's a long, narrow, mountainous country, and the roads aren't as good as you'll be used to in Britain, so travelling any distance takes more time than many overseas visitors realise.
Scottish Crossbill
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:39 pm
Location: UK

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby Scottish Crossbill » Mon Mar 11, 2019 12:14 am

Hi. Thanks to every-one for feed-back. It all sounds very exciting and I clearly have quite a bit of research to do! Tiritiri Matangi is definately on the list; if only because it's got such a great name!
Tim Barnard
Posts: 278
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:30 pm
Location: Okere Falls

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby Tim Barnard » Mon Mar 11, 2019 3:31 pm

Let me know when you arrive ... happy to show you a few places. The Bay of Plenty is a good place to land in NZ ...
Cheers
Tim
User avatar
PaulintheBay
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 8:12 am
Location: Tauranga, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand
Contact:

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby PaulintheBay » Mon Mar 11, 2019 7:52 pm

Hi Steve. Can show you a local colony of seabirds plus Little penguins . Paul Cuming. BirdsBOP
Scottish Crossbill
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2019 11:39 pm
Location: UK

Re: New to New Zealand

Postby Scottish Crossbill » Tue Mar 19, 2019 2:30 am

Hi All. I'm so saddened by the recent news from Christchurch. I hope your country can make a rapid recovery and that justice is fully served.

I would like to thank Tim and Paul for their recent offers and look forward to the opportunity to see you soon.

Best Wishes

Steve

Return to “General Birding Discussion”