The Weka Revival

DSCF0792Under threat elsewhere, Weka flourish on Kapiti

By Jim and Karl Webber

The cheeky Weka or woodhen, once common on mainland Aotearoa, flourishes on Kapiti Island, particularly since the extermination of rats in the late 1990’s.

Though not specially threatened by rats, Weka have found survival hard on the mainland where their main threats include stoats, cats and dogs.

Weka are omnivorous, very protective of their young, and noted for stealing bright, shiny objects. DSCF0816

On Kapiti they’re commonly seen fossicking along the foreshore.

On nearby Motungarara (Fisherman’s Island) the weka population is growing  where resident Karl Webber, who keeps watch over their welfare, took this photo of mother and young.

(both photos by Karl Webber)