This entry was posted on 12/13/2006 4:35 AM and is filed under New Zealand.
This is the KIWI - but it turns out you never see them, because they are nocturnal and scarce.
When we walked around Russell (and took the ferry over to it) there were many notices about the kiwi...
but by far our best experience came from visiting THE KIWI EXPERIENCE -
which is a special center devoted to gathering eggs from throughout the northern island of New
Zealand, hatching the chicks, and raising them until they are 1 kilo
in weight - at which point they return them to the area where the eggs were laid.
Each kiwi they raise costs between $2000 - $3000 NZD (about $1500-2000
USD), but the survival rate goes from less than 5% (as it would be
without this human intervention now) - to over 70%.
We took a 90 minute tour of the facility and really enjoyed it.
That morning a baby kiwi had broken through its egg and was newly born - and we got to see it! Very exciting.
It was very hard to take pictures because in most places they don't
allow it, and the one place they did, they didn't allow the use of flash, and it
was pretty dark. So we bought a 15 minute DVD, which we've edited
down to 3:48 minutes to give you the central core part of the
tour. We hope you enjoy the movie: