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In 1977 we hired our first narrowboat from Anglo Welsh at Market Harborough.From that moment our destiny was set. In 2006 we finally purchased our own brand new 57' narrowboat which we named 'Free Spirit'. Our aim is to travel the length and breadth of all the navigable rivers and canals of the UK. This will be our story as it unfolds.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Hobbits and Kiwis.

Three more things ticked off our list today. The McLaren Falls, Hobbiton and to see a Kiwi at the Otorohanga Kiwi house. On route, the falls became our first stop.

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We had planned to go to Otorohanga after the falls, to see the Kiwis and then drive back to Hobbiton. Didn't quite work out that way 'cos we detoured to Hobbiton to get tickets booked for later in the day first. As luck would have it several people had cancelled so the 9.30am slot became available and it was offered to us. So we changed plans and did the Hobbit experience first.

Outside Bilbo Baggins Hobbit hole

What a great place And here was I poo-pooing the whole Hobbit thing but even I was taken with the set and story. Can't wait to see the film now. Seems I am a converted Hobbit fan.

By midday, we were on route to Otorohanga. Arriving an hour later we purchased tickets and went to see those Kiwis. Now Kiwis are nocturnal so all the Kiwi houses were dark. As our eyes adjusted one appeared. I can't tell you how thrilled and excited I was. The keeper came and gave us a talk on their habitat, mating, egg incubation (it's the males that look after the 2 eggs for between 72 and 80 days) and also the breeding program here at the centre. More Kiwis are killed by introduced predators like the stoat, rats, cats and dogs than anything else and even the bushy tailed possum take them. But it wasn't just the Kiwis we came to see. Other endangered species were also here.

Red-crowned Parakeets. Endangered

Top row Kea. Endangered. Bottom left A Pig Goose one of the rarest geese in the world.And bottom right Kakariki Yellow-crowned Parakeet

Kaka. Endangered

Yellow gecko and a Cicada was seen on the footpath.  

Left is the Wega. Numbers are very low. Right is a Godwit

Sacred Kingfisher
In a park behind the Kiwi house was a camp site. Here we drove the van and parked up. We have power, showers and loos and best of all we get to hear the Kiwis calling to each other during the night. Another tip was given to us of glow worms along the path so that's where we will be heading later. 

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Mick's home town was Matamata. We got such a shock when we went to visit one year to find it transformed from its usual sleepy self into Hobbit heaven!! Lovely countryside isn't it. M&E xx

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