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Special Species Spotlight

Protect the special species living right here in the Waitākere Ranges Heritage Area.

The Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to protect the special species living in the Waitākere Ranges Heritage Area. ALL funds will be used to resource and support the work being done by volunteers to restore habitats through the removal of pest animals and plants, work to improve water quality, installation of nesting boxes, riparian planting, ongoing monitoring, and more! Our goal is for the Waitākere Ranges to be restored and thriving. Thank you so much for your support of our work, which will be for the enjoyment of all.

Kererū – the gardeners of the sky

These plump pigeons play a major role in keeping our forests alive and thriving. If it weren't for kererū, lots of our precious native trees, like miro, matai, taraire, tawa and puriri, would be in serious trouble.

While kererū are not threatened, over 75% of our indigenous species are at risk of extinction*. The Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this taonga species!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Wētā – nature’s nocturnal nurturer

NZ is a wētā wonderland and we'd like to keep it that way. Without these miniature monsters, we'd lose many important native plants and animals, which would upset our ecosystem balance.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this fascinating creepy-crawly!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Giant Kōkopu –

our endemic nocturnal fish

Giant kōkopu are found only in New Zealand. They lack scales and have a thick leathery skin covered with mucus. They are threatened and currently classified as 'declining'. Help the volunteer groups of the Waitākere Ranges restore their habitat.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this special fish!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Kororā / Little Penguin – 

the smallest penguin in the world

The little penguin / kororā is the smallest penguin in the world at just 25cm tall and weighing a little over 1kg. They are at risk and declining.

Your support will help volunteers to undertake trapping activity to keep predators at bay, to fence off penguin nesting areas, install nesting boxes and undertake monitoring activity of known populations in the Waitākere Ranges.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this fast and feisty little penguin!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Miromiro / Tomtit –

our tiny forest bird

The miromiro is endemic to New Zealand, hence found nowhere else in the world, and small, just 13cm long with a distinctive large head and a short bill. They are especially vulnerable to predation by ship rats.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this tiny tomtit!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Matuku / Bittern –

critically endangered

Matuku are dependent on wetlands and with their habitat under threat, they are globally endangered. In New Zealand, they are listed as threatened - nationally critical with fewer than 1,000 individuals.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this secretive bird!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Pekapeka / New Zealand long-tailed bat – aerial insectivores

These tiny bats are about the size of your thumb, weighing just 8-11 grams and can fly at 60kmph with a range of more than 100km2! They are found nowhere else in the world, and are at serious risk, classified as threatened - nationally critical.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this amazing little bat!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Mokopirirakau / Forest gecko – our tree dwellers

Another species found only in New Zealand, the forest gecko are tree dwelling and have been known to live upwards of 25 years.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this fascinating creepy-crawly!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Pepeketua / Hochstetter’s frog - a unique native frog

These earless voiceless frogs grow to around 5cm in length, and is the only native frog species to have a tadpole stage.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this unusual and interesting frog!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Tuna / Longfin eel - biggest eel in the world

One of New Zealand's top predators, the longfin eel is endemic to New Zealand, likely the biggest eel in the world reaching up to 2 metres in length, and can live for as long as 80 years.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of the longfin eel!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Ōi / Grey-faced petrel – mainland survivor

Endemic to the North Island ōi will mostly hunt squid, fish and crustaceans at night. It is thought they use light cues to spot bioluminescent prey, and they can travel up to 600km to feed their offspring. Town lights, however, disorientate these birds and result in crash landings. Once grounded, they are stuck as they're not suited to take off from the ground.

Ōi have made a comeback due to extensive predator control, but with over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend these, and the many other special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this awesome petrel!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Mātātā / Fern bird – a secretive wetland bird

Local populations are lost when wetlands are drained and converted to pasture, and compounded by predation by animal pests. Fernbirds have declined significantly since humans began draining wetlands. They are now classed globally as at risk, declining.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this secretive wetland bird!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Tara / White-fronted tern – only in NZ

The tara's nest takes no time to build, as it is usually just a depression on the ground without any nesting materials at all, though they will sometimes add a few small stones at the bottom of the nest. They are especially vulnerable to stoats, ferrets, cats, and rats, and disturbance by people and their dogs. They are currently listed as 'Declining'.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of the tara!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)

Tūturiwhatu / NZ dotterel – threatened shorebird

The endangered New Zealand dotterel/tūturiwhatu is found only in this country. Their nests are just scrapes in the sand, and their chicks have to find their own food from the day they hatch, though their parents will go to great lengths to protect them. Dotterals can live up to 25 years.

With over 75% of our indigenous species at risk of extinction*, the Pest Free Waitākere Ranges Alliance is raising funds to help defend the many special species of the Waitākere Ranges.

Thank you for your support of this bird, currently more rare than kiwi!

*Extinction threat to indigenous species | Stats NZ. (n.d.)