New Zealand Wildlife

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In the Abel Tasman national park

Just as in Australia we mainly focused on birds, but the whole landscape and vegetation is very special, with many unique trees and plants, including ferns and tree ferns.

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Larger trees support epiphytes

Many of the trees have beautiful and extraordinary flowers.

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We found lots of these on the ground during a forest walk near Waikanae

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Rewarewa flowers

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Small Pohutukawa in Takapuna

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Pohutukawa buds and flowers

Some trees have a juvenile stage which doesn’t look much like the adult tree.

Juvenile lancewood; small tree with mature leaves; mature leaves appearing on juvenile

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Lichen

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The cabbage tree

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A flowering shrub, poroporo

The NZ flax was in flower, attracting birds such as Tui.

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The Tui hid as soon as the camera appeared!

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Flax can grow very tall

Many flowers were in blossom.

Green hood orchid; the yellow lupins were introduced

There were butterflies and bees everywhere. We mainly saw cabbage white and monarchs, as well as monarch caterpillars.

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Monarch caterpillars

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Rather tired-looking monarch

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Common copper

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Freshly hatched female monarch

The only native mammals we saw were fur seals, sunbathing on the rocks or swimming

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Fur seal in Tasman Bay

Some birds were happy to hang around to have their photos taken, especially if they sensed there might be picnic crumbs dropped. Others were very shy, so this selection by no means covers all we saw, which included Kiwi, Saddleback, Whitehead, Silvereye, Grey warbler, Bellbird, Kaka, Brown quail, Brown teal and NZ dotterel, to mention only the NZ specials.

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Takahe enjoying its lunch – grass

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White-faced heron

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Toutouwai or NZ robin (North Island)

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Weka chick

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Adult weka

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Kereru or NZ pigeon

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A friendly little robin

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Tui

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Black swan with cygnets

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Karoro or black-backed gull

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Parera or grey duck

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Pied shag

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Mallard with ducklings

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Grey duck, mallard and pukeko

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Red-billed gull

 

 

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