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5 Ways to Save a Kiwi Bird

You can help protect kiwi too!

Not only are kiwi birds unique and fascinating creatures, but they are pretty darn cute! New Zealand is the only place in the world with wild kiwi. That’s why it is so important to stop the rapid decline of this species, so we can continue to see them frolicking in the wild. The kiwi can also continue to be New Zealand’s national icon.

There are several fun ways backpackers like you can help protect kiwi birds, from something as simple as making a small donation to visiting the kiwi habitat itself!

If you want a more in-depth story about releasing a kiwi into the wild, check out: Saving Smaug the Kiwi Bird.

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1. Visit a kiwi sanctuary

Sanctuaries are a safe haven for New Zealand’s native wildlife. They are heavily protected from pests that threaten native species. A lot of work goes into maintaining these areas, for example, repairing the specially designed fences around the perimeter of the sanctuary that stop pests from getting in. By paying the fee to visit these sanctuaries, you are supporting the good work that they do! Find out about the 5 sanctuaries here: Where to See Kiwi Birds in New Zealand.

Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari. Old New Zealand.

2. Buy a gift

You can’t go home after your working holiday without some gifts for the family. Hit two birds with one stone (no pun intended, plus, you should never throw stones at kiwi) by buying a gift from Kiwis for Kiwi where proceeds go to the charity protecting kiwi!

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3. Volunteer

Exchange a bit of your time to protect a whole kiwi population! There are volunteering opportunities with the New Zealand Trust for Conservation Volunteers and the Department of Conservation. A common way volunteers are helping protect the kiwi is setting up traps to stop pests killing kiwi.

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4. Make a donation

Whether a visit to a sanctuary inspires you to donate to their cause, or you want to give something back to the good work of charities, giving a donation is easy. As the Kiwis for Kiwi charity says, NZ$100 is “enough to provide predator control over 10ha for an entire year – enough to save a kiwi.” You can donate to kiwi sanctuaries, Kiwis for Kiwi, and WWF, who fund kiwi practitioners to look after kiwi.

kiwi bird

5. Help with a kiwi health check

A unique opportunity, but not impossible! Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari, near Cambridge, Waikato, gives people the chance to get a hands on experience with a kiwi health check in exchange for a reasonable donation. Opportunities like this don’t pop up every day but, you can keep an eye out on the Sanctuary Mountain website.

You can find out exactly how the health check works when we had the opportunity to see it for ourselves in: Saving Smaug the Kiwi Bird.
kiwi bird health check

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