New Zealand Bird Identification

New Zealand Bird Identification
New Zealand is a country famed for its natural beauty, and that beauty comes in a variety of climates and terrains. The result is that the island country is home to a rich diversity of birds, making it a popular travel destination for bird watchers. However, even an amateur can have fun with birding. Bird identification is a simple process of elimination, so with a pair of binoculars and some information about local birds, anyone can do it.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Binoculars
  • Binoculars
Step 1
Make an estimate of the bird's relative size and also judge its shape. The black-browed albatross (sometimes called a "mollymawk" by New Zealanders) is a very large bird. Its body shape is proportional, whereas other birds might have a bulbous body or head.
Step 2
Note the shape, size and color of the bird's bill. The kawaupaka has a small, yellow, hooked bill. This bird is found nearly everywhere in New Zealand. By way of comparison, the black-browed albatross has a yellow hooked bill as well, but its bill is quite long.
Step 3
Check the colors of the bird. The pukeko, found in New Zealand's wetlands, is a black-green bird with white hindquarters. The black-bowed albatross has a white head and body with black wings, back, and tail.
Step 4
Observe the bird's habitat. New Zealand's kaki is a waterbird, and is one of the world's most endangered birds. Once found everywhere in New Zealand, it now lives only around the wetlands of Kakï Visitor Hide and Twizel. The black-browed albatross, however, breeds on small islands off New Zealand's shores and spends much of its time over the open ocean.
Step 5
Observe the behavior of the bird. New Zealand's little owl is an aerial diver that principally hunts rodents and small reptiles. It is found in Canterbury, Nelson, Marlborough, Otago Southland and Wairarapa. The albatross is an ocean-going dabbler, a bird that hunts for fish by swimming on the surface.

Article Written By Edwin Thomas

Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.

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