Chevvy and I make a regular walk along the Uretara Estuary. It changes everyday. Some days I notice the scenery, some days it is the people while other days I take in the wildlife…I have even been on a ‘let’s look at the houses’ walk.
Today I am going to share what I was taken with on my latest walk…the bird life.
Two Pied Stilts in the water and on land what I think is the South Island Oystercatcher. In the photo below amongst the South Island Oystercatchers you might notice one completely black bird. This I think is the Variable Oystercatcher (Haematopus unicolor, torea or toreapango) and is found on rocky and sandy beaches. It is rare bird – there were around 3,500 birds in 1994, and they are found only in New Zealand.
South Island Oystercatchers taking off.
Racing off in the other direction I spotted some Black Swans.
A bit further and Chevvy and I surprised a flock of sparrows.
This sweet Blackbird was not at all bothered as we walked past.
As we continued I heard a familiar sound and after some searching was thrilled to spot a Tui.
Actually…a couple of them.
Just a bit further and a very hard to get close to New Zealand Kingfisher [kōtare, kotare, green kingfisher, tree kingfisher, wood kingfisher] popped up. It stayed beautifully posed on a flax plant for me.
A few paces on and a cheeky Fan-tail swooped in and settled itself on the flax plants as well.
Further along I was thrilled to see a Little Shag, also known as the white-throated shag, little pied shag, little cormorant, kawau paka, little pied cormorant having a swim.
We also have the Pied Shag whose other names include: pied cormorant, kāruhiruhi, karuhiruhi, kawau, yellow-faced cormorant , large pied shag.
Across the Uretara Stream I spotted a gathering of shags which also included a few Black Shags [black cormorant, great cormorant, kawau, large black shag].
Of course no walk along the estuary would be complete without a few ducks. One Mallard Duck thought a bit of a show was in order and set about chasing off the others.
Everyday the ducks wait…and are rewarded with a feed of bread by this lady.
The Mallards Ducks, Peking Ducks and what I think are Black Swedish Ducks come fast and furious to get their share.
And they are still at it.
Some ducks never know when to stop.
As well as the ducks the Pukekos are not shy about coming to get their fair share of the bread.
Pukekos co-exist with the other water fowl however are known for killing young chicks in their nests.
Keeping an eye from a perch high above is the White-Faced Heron…also known as the matuku moana, matuku, blue heron, blue crane, whitefaced heron, white faced heron.
As Chevvy and I headed for home…we were rewarded with a wonderful sight. Not one but two New Zealand Kingfishers just across the road from my house. The perfect way to end this wonderful walk if you ask me. I got so excited at seeing two of them I nearly peed my pants.
So I took a couple of photos…
As we crossed the road to head up my driveway…one more surprise. A Eurasian Collared Dove wandering around.
Well that’s it for my walk. I know it was long…but it was worth it don’t you think ????