We have been to various parts of the world to see wildlife and we had to give ourselves a good chance of seeing a kiwi when visiting New Zealand. We had 3 nights on Stewart Island and booked on the basis that we would take this tour when the conditions were suitable. On our first night it was calm in Oban, although for those like us not keen on sea voyages the boat pitched and rolled a bit on the 35 minute journey. There were about 16 other visitors and a couple of guides as well as Phillip the captain. The trek through the bush is not too difficult, although a walking pole helped , particularly stumbling along by torchlight on the return.
We had excellent views of one kiwi on the beach and saw another along the beach in the distance. A wonderful experience to see one probing in the sand and unperturbed by the group who were well-marshalled and well-behaved nature enthusiasts.We also saw a Morepork above the track and heard the male and female kiwis calling in the bush.
Presumably the kiwis near this beach are partly used to human observation, and Phillip reports a very high (but not quite 100%) success rate.
A great wildlife experience and must-do for any birder visiting New Zealand
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