How to meet a Kiwi

AAT Kings does all it can to support the conservation of NZ’s Kiwi. Not only do you have the chance to get up close and personal with one on your next visit, you can also save 10 per cent on your trip.

Rainbow Springs Nature Park is nestled alongside the beautiful rainforests of Rotorua, NZ. The Park offers a family friendly, educational experience that aims to educate anyone and everyone about New Zealand’s diverse, fascinating and dynamic natural history. Rainbow Springs Nature Park also offers its guests a chance to get up close and personal with the creatures of New Zealand that call Rainbow Springs home. 

kiwi at rainbow springs

One of the little creatures that calls Rainbow Springs home is the cute little Kiwi! The iconic Kiwi bird, a national treasure to New Zealand is quite the odd little animal. Unlike most birds, the Kiwi is renowned for its incredible sense of smell, being a nocturnal animal and the fact that’s flightless. Most birds have light, hollow bones which allow them to fly, but as the Kiwi has heavy bones and very strong leg muscles, it has adapted to life on the ground. In fact, they’re so unlike normal birds that the feathers on the Kiwi itself have more similar qualities to the fur on mammals than with the feathers of other birds.

The Nature Park prides itself on the conservation work it does with this endangered species. Rainbow Springs first became involved in Kiwi conservation in 1975, and in 1995, joined the Operation Nest Egg programme (O.N.E) when it received its first egg from the Tongariro Forest Kiwi Sanctuary. Since 1995, Rainbow Springs has helped greatly in boosting the population of the Brown Kiwi in New Zealand’s North Island.

setting a kiwi free

Rotorua’s Rainbow Springs now receives eggs from 15 different sanctuaries and reserves around the North Island of the country, meaning that it is New Zealand’s’ leading Kiwi hatchery – over 1500 eggs have been hatched at Rainbow Springs since 1995! An incredible achievement in the contribution to the survival of such an endangered animal!

The Department of Conservation staff, along with the field teams, keeps a close eye on the male kiwis during the breeding process and at the right time, the teams will safely take the eggs from the burrows of the kiwis and put them into incubation in the Kiwi Encounter Centre. This process allows the team to monitor the hatching process and let the young chicks hatch in peace, away from the very real danger of predators.

maori culture

AAT Kings is proud to do all it can in support of the conservation of New Zealand’s iconic native Kiwi bird. It contributes to the Rainbow Springs Kiwi Breeding Program in Rotorua. This enables the Department of Conservation staff to raise and hatch the chicks, perform necessary health checks, monitor their wellbeing day by day, and research further into the incubation and rearing of the iconic Kiwi bird. All in all, it aims to assist Rainbow Springs as much as it can by helping raise awareness about the vital protection of this national icon and play a vital role in their survival.

Keen to see for yourself the great work that AAT Kings supports at Rainbow Springs Nature Park? Save 10 per cent on bookings of AAT Kings Guided Holidays in New Zealand when you book and pay in full by 26 April 2017. AAT Kings brings the very best that New Zealand has to offer and its friendly Travel Directors and Driver Guides bring each destination to life.  Keen to find out more?


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