Saddleback success

There was big breakthrough in the 1960s when saddlebacks or tieke were saved from certain extinction. The range for these birds had been steadily reduced to just one speck of land, Big South Cape Island. When ships’ rats invaded the island in 1964, the saddlebacks seemed doomed. But they were all captured and moved to other rat-free islands. Now they survive – and prosper – on 20 of them.
North Island saddlebacks have staged similarly successful recovery, and are most accessible on Tiritiri Matangi in the Hauraki Gulf, just off the Whangaparaoa Peninsula. The saddlebacks, along with takahe and other endangered birds, are the star attractions of this successful island sanctuary.

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