POHOKURA KIWI PROJECT
Kiwi numbers at Pohokura are low. We therefore plan to release 200 kiwi here by 2024. The property has the potential to support as many as 500 breeding pairs within the species’ natural geographic range.
We achieved a viable population of kiwi at Maungataniwha in June last year through the Maungataniwha Kiwi Project. We plan to repeat the achievement at Pohokura, releasing up to 40 kiwi here each year from 2019, or until 200 kiwi have been released.
Maungataniwha is the primary source of birds. Some may also be sourced from other appropriate locations within the eastern brown kiwi region.
The initiative is underpinned by extensive predator control work.
Kiwi conservation work at Pohokura is funded primarily by the Trust, with specialist not-for-profit provider OSPRI undertaking pest management work to the value of $160,000 and Hawke’s Bay Regional Council contributing trapping equipment worth $11,500.
Re-establishing kiwi at Pohokura supports the long-term goal of the national Kiwi Recovery Plan; to reach 100,000 kiwi by 2030 through growing populations of all kiwi species by at least two percent a year, restoring them to their former distribution and maintaining their genetic diversity.
Eastern brown kiwi are the least managed and fastest declining of the four regional populations. Establishing a population of around 100 pairs within five years at Pohokura will make a significant contribution towards the recovery of this species.
We hope our work at Pohokura will ultimately help re-populate neighbouring areas with kiwi. Just as Maungataniwha is now the source of kiwi to re-stock Pohokura, so we hope that ultimately Pohokura kiwi will make their way naturally to neighbouring areas such as the Whirinaki Conservation Forest, which is also being made safe for them.
Some of the birds released at Pohokura are fitted with radio-transmitters so that their dispersal and survival can be monitored.