There are currently over thirty species of land birds on the coastal strip between Mauao
and Moturiki. They are a mixture of native and introduced species. The forest
on the slopes of Mauao is home to native species; Morepork, Tui, Fantail,
Silvereye, Grey Warbler, Welcome Swallow and Kingfisher.

Morepork (Ruru)

The bush on Mauao, Moturiki and Motuotau provides good cover for this owl, and it has been noted on most nights when the Petrel teams are running. One can be seen often on the ocean side of the track on Mauao very near the entrance gate.

Morepork (Ruru) – NZ Birds on Line

Morepork. Adult pair roosting showing contrasting plumage. Blowhard Bush, December 2012. Photo by Adam Clarke


The Kingfisher is a Pacific species right at home in either the bush or rocky shore. Nesting in holes in banks, the birds are supreme fishers, and add to their diet with crabs, crickets and lizards.  

Sacred Kingfisher – NZ Birds on Line

Sacred kingfisher. Adult with green and golden bell frog. Auckland, December 2013. Photo by Bartek Wypych


Tui numbers fluctuate wildly on Mauao, Moturiki and Motuotau depending on what is flowering. Kowhai attract Tui in large numbers on Mauao. Tui are one of the more recognisable species of bird in New Zealand.

Tui – NZ Birds on Line

Tui. Adult. Pureora, January 2006. Photo by Neil Fitzgerald


North Island Kaka use Mauao and Moturiki occasionally as part of a wider circuit of feed trees. You are lucky to see one, but where there is one there are usually a group. Keep an eye out. Usually you can hear them before you see them, as their calls are quite distinctive (think of a Tui with a crashing hangover)

Kaka – NZ Birds on Line

Kaka. Adult North Island kaka. Kapiti Island, May 2008. Photo by Duncan Watson

New Zealand Falcon

A rare bird in the Bay of Plenty, but with many areas of pine trees planted in the region, the Falcon has adapted to living in them. The bird has only been seen a few times from the base track of The Mount.

NZ Falcon – NZ Birds on Line

New Zealand falcon. Adult female. At Wingspan, Rotorua, December 2010. Photo by Joke Baars

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