Birds of Rakiura

By Candice Marshall August 14, 2023
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New Zealand’s third-largest island is famous for its bird species.

New Zealand’s birdlife has been heavily affected by introduced feral predators, but Rakiura (Stewart Island) is an avian utopia.

Of the island’s, 85 per cent is national park. Its human population of 400 is far outnumbered by birdlife, with many of the approximately 130 avian species found here declared endangered or vulnerable nationally.

While their mainland counterparts have fallen victim to introduced mammals and marsupials (chick and egg-eating types such as possums, stoats and ferrets) Stewart Island provides a haven from these feral predators, allowing birdlife to thrive.

Above, we showcase just some of the remarkable species thriving on Rakiura.

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Related: A birding paradise in the South Pacific