MG 1921


Recently we had the chance to visit the Maungatautari Ecological Island, a mountain in the Waikato that has 47km of fencing to keep predators out. Our visit was quite short but we saw enough to know we’ll be back. Much like Zealandia the predator eradication and fencing has allowed a sanctuary for native wildlife to be created, the main difference being Maungatautari is much larger in scope and has much more mature vegetation. With Bridget, Dean and Adam we visited the Southern Enclosure and spent an hour or so walking to the canopy tower and back.

MG 1921Photo by Brendon & Keryn

Keryn stands in front of the canopy tower.

MG 1929Photo by Brendon & Keryn

Checking out the canopy.

MG 1941Photo by Brendon & Keryn

Adam & Dean below.

The forest here was mature with soaring trees and a dense understory. It was a warm day but we spent most of the walk under the cool shade of the forest, only poking out when we climbed the tall tower. Nearby was a clearing with some bird feeders and here we got to watch Kaka climbing the surrounding trees and also disturbed the visit of a raged looking tomtit.

MG 1959Photo by Brendon & Keryn

A kaka climbing a punga.

MG 1993Photo by Brendon & Keryn

A family portrait in the clearing.

Walking back there were more birds, a bellbird I spotted feeding on pink berries, later on a grey warbler looking for bugs underneath leaves on a tree by the trackside and right at the end another tomtit arrived to watch us leave. Adam had fun being swung around between Keryn and myself as we walked and then raced around exploring the stream we crossed on a sturdy bridge.

MG 2049Photo by Brendon & Keryn

A bellbird feeds on a berry.

MG 2056Photo by Brendon & Keryn

Adam peers through his binoculars.

MG 2094Photo by Brendon & Keryn

Parataniwha always reminds me of tramps from Te Kauri with the Junats.

MG 2128Photo by Brendon & Keryn

The farewell tomtit.

It may have been a short visit but I saw more than enough to want to visit again, maybe next time to traverse the mountain on a much longer hike.

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