By Megan Farley, Ranger (Biodiversity Services) in Rangiora.
The orange-fronted parakeet (kākāriki karaka) is arguably New Zealand’s most threatened endemic forest bird species.
During a recent stint in the field, the orange-fronted parakeet team spent four days monitoring the population of parakeets that have been released on Maud Island in the Marlborough Sounds
Maud Island has had a few issues for the parakeet population, due to a pair of falcon (kārearea) attacking fledging chicks, a lack of nesting sites, and a lack of water and food sources.
Despite these setbacks a flock of eight orange fronted parakeets were found during this trip, all feeding together on olearia flowers (tree daisies) and bathing in the nearby stream.
Of the individual parakeets that were found, three were original birds released onto the island over six years ago, while five were birds that had hatched on the island.