New Zealand Kereru

Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae (also known as Kereru)

new zealand pigeon2

Distribution:

Throughout New Zealand

Habitat:

Forests and some urban areas, with sufficient roosting and feeding areas.

Diet:

Seeds, large fruits, flowers, leaf shoots

Gestation:

Breeding is October to March and they nest on a shallow platform usually 2-6m above the ground made of loosely intertwined sticks which will be continually added to. They lay one egg incubated for 29-10 days. If the egg is lost another may be laid if early in the season. Chicks stay in nests for 11-12 weeks and fledge at around 40-45 days.

Predators:

New Zealand falcons, introduced mammals, humans

Conservation Status:

Near threatened – poor breeders, these birds require protection from hunting and safe habitats to build up numbers.

General:

This endemic species is an important seed-spreader in the forest, and several native tree species rely on the kereru for survival. In the past humans killed many, and illegal poaching still continues.