Taranaki Mounga and Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust are calling on the public to help out with bird monitoring to gauge the success of recent bird translocations.

In the run up to the spring breeding season, both Rotokare and Taranaki Mounga want to get an accurate idea of the toutouwai/robin population on Mt Taranaki and hihi and toutouwai populations at Rotokare.

We are calling on volunteers to help out by monitoring lines on both Mt Taranaki and at the Rotokare Reserve looking and listening out for birds. Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust Site Manager Fiona Gordon says training will be provided.

“Patience, a sharp set of eyes, and a keen ear for birds will be helpful for this but anyone can do these surveys with a bit of training under their belt. It is a great opportunity to develop your bird skills and get to know some of these species better,” she says.

Taranaki Mounga released 50 toutouwai/robin on Mt Taranaki in April this year, after a 110 year absence. DOC Senior Biodiversity Ranger Emily King says the purpose of the monitoring is to gauge pair numbers before the breeding season.

“Toutouwai/robin are such cool little birds and bird monitoring is like having a walk in the bush, with purpose.   The other bonus is you get to meet interesting and like minded people, however volunteers must be physically able to walk along rough tracks,” she says.

The robin survey will take place on Mt Taranaki between 4 and 17 September. The Rotokare Trust also needs support in monitoring toutouwai in the reserve from 27 August-3 September and hihi from 18-28 September. People need good footwear and clothing for cold/wet conditions, a notebook and pencil, phone or watch and binoculars. Training days will be offered on Sunday 27 August at Rotokare and Sunday 3 September on the mountain at the North Taranaki Visitor Centre.

If you are interested in volunteering contact Fiona Gordon fiona@rotokare.org.nz or 06 764 8500