More warning signs after kiwi death
New road signs have been put up to try and stop New Zealand’s national bird from becoming road kill.
The death of a Kiwi - hit by a car near Raurimu in June - has resulted in the NZ Transport Agency placing more signs in and around Tongariro National Park.
Biodiversity services ranger Jenny Hayward said it was cool to see more signs up around the area including Raurimu.
‘‘There have been reported sightings of Kiwi crossing down there.
‘‘It’s about using your common sense and putting your foot off the gas and being a bit more wary, you don’t know, you might save a kiwi.’’
New bright yellow kiwi signs with the message ’Kiwi’s crossing at night’ have been put back onto signage after being removed several years ago.
Senior ranger Stacey Faire said signs have been placed on both sides of the road coming into the Tongariro National Park.
A stolen sign has now been replaced down Bruce Rd.
Signs have been placed on either side of State Highway 47, where a kiwi is known to frequently cross in the Tongariro Forest and National Park.
‘‘What happens is when they’re young, they bounce around and when they get older they settle in an area until then they are just constantly ping ponging across any area and of course, in their mind, the road isn’t there and they are roaming their territory and parts of it are tarmac. ‘‘You’d be surprised how close they are to the road which we’d prefer they don’t.’’
Faire said it was a timely reminder especially as October was Save Kiwi Month.
DOC staff would like to hear from anyone who sees a kiwi or finds signs have been removed or damaged.
Hayward said people don’t need to worry if they accidentally hit a kiwi but it was important for DOC staff to be notified.
NZ Transport Agency Media manager Liz Banas said they would be working closely with the Ruapehu District Council and DOC installing more signs if needed.
‘‘Meanwhile our maintenance contractors are aware of the cleanliness of the Tongariro National Park signs and have programmed the works to replace them or have them cleaned.’’
DOC Ranger Jenny Hayward is happy to see more signs warning motorist to watch out for kiwis.