Bird watches turn up for dotterels
Members of the New Zealand Ornithological Society turned up in force at the Waikanae Estuary recently.
They were keen to catch a sight of the banded dotterel or the New Zealand dotterel.
Both species had been seen by local bird spotters who believed they could be nesting on the sand spit.
Three of the birds endemic to New Zealand were seen at the estuary last summer but failed to breed.
Member Dianne Parker said the breeding season extends from August to January.
“The estuary is a regionally wellknown bird sanctuary with a total of 84 species recorded over the years. “Last year 57 species were recorded. “The dotterel nests, called scrape, are nondescript and hard to spot.
“We are always keen to have locals taking an active interest in monitoring and protecting these species and we have members who can train people to undertake bird counts.”
Dotterel spotters at the Waikanae Estuary.