Saturday, 21 May 2011

Morepork / Ruru

I heard a Morepork (or Ruru in Maori) a couple of mornings ago. The time was between 5 - 5:30am and it was the first bird of the morning. It sounded close enough to be on our property.   I can't recall having heard a Morepork in this district before.  It's definitely the first time I have heard one while living on this property and we've been here for 9 years.  But then this district doesn't have a lot of bush left.  There are only a few isolated pockets around the place.

When I was a child and living in Akatarawa we used to hear them all the time as we were surrounded by bush.  We used to try track them down by their call to see if we could see them.  Occasionally we succeeded.  Usually they would be silhouetted against the sky half way up a Black Beech tree or something similar.

You can listen to the Morepork's distinctive call here. 

The image on the right has been shamelessly linked from the Forest and Bird Weblog.   The call comes courtesy of Kiwi Wildlife Tours.


Shunda barunda said...

I found a dead one on our property (urban Greymouth) about a month ago under a twisted willow.

The little guy had his talon stuck in his wing, I am not sure if this is why he died, but it did seem quite odd.

The DoC ranger reckoned there was no evidence of other injury (from a cat etc).

In general the native bird life around here has increased a great deal, we even have weka walking around!

Thrash Cardiom said...

We get very little native bird life. There isn't a lot of bush around this district. It was all removed years ago for farms. We have planted flaxes around the place in an effort to attract tui and it has worked to some degree. They do call in on our property for a quick feed at the right time of year. No stayers though.

Shunda barunda said...

Thrash, we have an Australian 'Banksia' tree which flowers all winter long (and well into spring) which provides nectar at exactly the right time for Tui and Bell birds.
They are around here for a good 6 months of the year now.
Sometimes exotics can be very useful (so long as they are not invasive to a region).

Rose said...

Whereabouts are you? We're in Wainuiomata and here them at dawn and dusk, and have also been out 'hunting' for them. Spurred on by the fact that you've seen them

Thrash Cardiom said...

Living way up in Hawke's Bay these days. Not a lot of bush around where we are which is what made it so surprising. There should be more of them closer to the mountains where the bush still remains but most of the area we are in is farmland - dairy, sheep and cropping.