Birds In Paradise
About an hour from downtown Wellington is Kapiti Island, one of New Zealand’s most successful nature reserves and a model for wildlife and flora conservation. Award-winning journalist Jill Robinson takes a day-trip there. “On a visit to Kapiti Island, a ferry drops you at Waiorua Bay along the rocky shoreline dotted with shiny paua shells. Immediately, you’re surrounded by the calls of tui, kaka, saddleback, weka, takahi — and the noisy beat of the wings of the large kereru.” Kapiti Island, which is approximately 5km from the mainland, has been used as a bird sanctuary since 1897. In 1987, the Department of Conservation (DOC) took over the administration of the island.