Today heralds the start of #SaveKiwiMonth and our Kiwis are looking after some yet-to-be-hatched kiwi eggs!

These precious kiwi eggs will be hatched at Auckland Zoo as part of the Operation Nest Egg (ONE) programme with the Department of Conservation, Kiwis for Kiwi and other regional conservation partners. Once the chicks hatch they will be released onto predator free islands in the Hauraki Gulf so they can grow up to have chicks of their own!

Bird keeper Debs met our friends at Thames Coast Kiwi Care halfway between Auckland and the Coromandel to collect the eggs which are from two different kiwi dads. As you can see from the egg markings, Kori is sire to one of the eggs and our bird team have determined through the process of candling (shining a bright light source through the shell to see the development of the embryo) that this egg is about 40-days-old.

The second and older of the two eggs at 60-days-old, is from dad Taringama. The ‘ma’ in Taringama’s name is from the little white patch over his ear (taringa). Incredibly, this is the 18th egg from him that we’ve incubated as part of the ONE programme.

It takes around 75-80 days for the egg to incubate before the chick will push through the outer wall with its strong legs. This means the oldest egg may hatch mid-October so keep your eyes peeled for updates!


Operation Nest Egg in action with keeper Nat

Nat shows the role of us and our partners in Operation Nest Egg and how we help kiwi in the wild