I have had a full-on month in March, I had the amazing opportunity to be a part of kiwi catching week at the Taranaki Kōhanga Kiwi at Rotokare a partnership between Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust and Taranaki Kiwi Trust.
A team of conservation dogs was on site to track down kiwi for export to other projects, I was there to learn and assist with kiwi handling and general health checks for their translocations throughout Taranaki in the following weeks.
I did my very first transmitter change with our accredited trainer Sian Potier, with all eyes watching me I carefully put a new temporary transmitter on a kiwi called Hori.
It’s a meticulous task not getting any feathers or fingers prints on the wrapping tape, counting the perfect amount of times around so the transmitter won’t come loose, but ensuring if it does get caught on a tree root or similar the bird can still break free. It is a job where lots of practice makes perfect and I know I will need to do many more and spend weeks practicing my telemetry skills before I can become accredited as a handler.
I feel like I know the networks and hills of Rotokare Sanctuary like the back of my hand now and that week certainly bought up my step count!
The end of March marked my halfway mark for my 2 million step target, so with 6 months down, I have conquered 1,045,391 steps!!
You can make a donation to Māia’s 2 millions step campaign at our Givealittle page https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/taranakikiwi