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Bird watching on Rarotonga

Dunedin, New Zealand
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Bird watching on Rarotonga

Hi I'm going here for the first time in August and wondered if there were any hints around.

We are staying at Muri Beach and I'm going to be going for a day to the Takitimu Conservation Area. Are there any other places to aim for?

Thanks

Bruce

Rarotonga, Cook...
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for Rarotonga
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1. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

If you love birds, you should head to the island of Atiu, which literally means 'land of birds'. There are more species there than on any other Cook Island, including some of the rarest in the world. The Rarotonga Flycatcher, which is endangered and the Kopeka or Atiu Swiftlet of which there are only about 500 are two of the species that you could see. They actually have a tour designed strictly for bird watchers. Unfortunately they don't have day tours but you would have to stay at least one night or two as there is only one flight a day. Well, they fly most days!

Cheers!

Dunedin, New Zealand
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2. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

Thanks for that.

Atiu will have to wait for another trip but any advice for Rarotonga or Aitutaki?

Thanks

Bruce

Avarua, Rarotonga
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3. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

Hi Bruce, You might like to check out a short video on www.rarolens.com that shows kuriri (wandering tattler) and kotuku (herons) on Rarotonga (rarolens.com/2011/07/wetlands-wildlife-aroko…). We have some birds that winter over from Alaska from September until April so you'll miss out on those but you will be able to see kakaia (white terns) and long tailed tropic birds (tavake). If you head inland you may hear the Rarotonga starling (i'oi), rupe (Pacific pigeon) and kukupa (fruit dove).

If you get to Aitutaki you may see the blue lorikeet.

I recently saw a long tailed cuckoo in my garden - i believe it comes from NZ and I'd heard it a lot before actually catching sight of it but I haven't seen or heard it since after that first glimpse.

If we have bad weather - cyclones for example - we often see frigate birds but you don't really want storms while you're here on holiday.

And of course mynahs and chickens are everywhere.

Hope you enjoy your visit.. Regards, Penelopecin

Arorangi
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4. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

Kia Orana

When you get here call Joe Brider at the National Environment Service. I hear Joe has been training volunteers for a bird study survey - and he could probably use the help.

Never know your luck.

RBB

Edited: 5:37 am, July 08, 2011
Rarotonga, Cook...
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for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland
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5. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

Just to add to RBB's info above, our environment NGO Te Ipukarea Society is in charge of the current bird study looking into the habitat for our native starling known as the I'o. You may be able to hook in with the group listening for the I'o bird calls.

Te Ipukarea Society (TIS) can be found on the main road in town near Paradise Inn ph 21144 and is primarily involved in bird conservation here on Raro. Also, when you visit the TCA, talk to Ian who is also a key person in TIS.

Reef herons - both white and grey can be found along the foreshore around Raro, and more so on Aitutaki. should you be visiting that island also. Tavake (long-tailed tropic frigate) nest on Honeymoon island, Aitutaki.

Dunedin, New Zealand
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6. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

Hi Everybody,

Thanks for those ideas. Rarolens looks a good website.

Going looking starlings will be a bit different to New Zealand.

Bruce

Edited: 6:59 pm, July 15, 2011
7. Re: Bird watching on Rarotonga

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