Tanya Cumberland & Charmaine Pountney write about their visit to Kapiti Island
And are you going to be anywhere near Wellington in the near future?
If so, a visit to Kapiti Island Nature Reserve is a must.
You can take a day trip, or stay overnight with a mana whenua family, the Barretts, at their lodge.
In April, from our rustic cabin on the island, we watched the antics of takahe, kereru, kaka and weka; and along the walking tracks we also saw tui, saddlebacks, stitchbirds, robins and bellbirds, plus of course the wetland and coastal birds. And at night, a guided walk by torchlight revealed the little silky-grey spotted kiwi scuttling along in the undergrowth.
This strategically placed reserve – only 5km off the Kapiti Coast – has been regerating for 110 years in the south and 40 years in north. It’s had no possums, and has been rat-free for around 20 years now, so the bush is lush and the bird-life prolific.
It’s accessible by boat from Paraparaumu www.kapitimarinecharter.co.nz , and any visit requires a DOC permit. Enjoy! And think what our bush could be like in twenty years if we keep up the good pest control and restoration work!