Zealandia turns 20
All I needed was a sunny and still day to convince me to go and visit my favourite sanctuary. I was a bit worried because birdlife at home has been a bit quiet this last week and I thought Zealandia might be quiet too, but I was so glad to be wrong! As soon as I walked through the gates I knew it was going to be a good day, the Kaka were out and about being their usual crazy-selves, it is so much fun to watch them play-fight and be in their natural habitat.
As usual the Kakariki were hanging around their feeders, their striking green plumage camouflages so well into the trees but their red eye bands give them away. I love how expressive their faces are, sometimes they look slightly crazy, and other times the look so gentle and inquisitive.
The token Robin photo!
Saddleback were especially plentiful today, they could be heard calling from miles away, I love watching them fossicking on the ground and scampering up trees looking for grubs. I even saw some in the sunlight, which is so unusual, as they seem to favour the damp and shady areas of the forest, which makes it hard to get decent photos of them!
The Hihi were buzzing around their feeders, it's so amazing seeing so many of these rare birds in one area. A kind volunteer had just topped up their sugar water, and she left a small amount on one of the bench seats, which a couple of the male Hihi were licking up. It was quite funny seeing such an elegant bird doing such an un-elegant thing!I'm so grateful to be able to visit this wonderful place whenever I want, and especially grateful for the effect it has had on where I live. Not many suburbs have so many Tui, Bellbirds, Kaka and other natives in the neighbourhood, and it is only because of Zealandia that I get so many visitors in my backyard. It is Zealandia's 20th birthday this weekend, they have achieved so much in this previous 20 years, I can only imagine what they will achieve in the next 20!