In 2005, soon after North Island weka were found to be living at Kawakawa Bay, a small team of birders conducted a weka survey. The calls of 16 different weka were heard. Every autumn since then the weka have been counted and the progress of the population recorded.
Weka numbers are known to fluctuate wildly, affected by weather, food availability, disease, and predation pressures. Over the last 13 years the numbers in the Bay area have ranged between that first 16 to around 130. The counts in 2016 and 2017 were a low period, down to 20 and last year 29. This last summer has been better for breeding. What will we hear this time?
The 2018 count will take place over 3 Saturday nights, March 17th and 24th and April 7th.
Counters walk to the sites in the late afternoon and listen for 90 minutes for weka calls, recording the time and location of each. If you are reasonably fit and like to walk over farm or forest tracks you might like to find out more about joining the counters.