Once numbering in their millions across Aotearoa New Zealand, today there are fewer than 70,000 kiwi in the wild, and that rate is declining by 2% each year. Predators, lost habitat and fragmented populations mean that of the five species, three are endangered.
Crombie Lockwood insurance brokers are proud to extend their protection to New Zealand’s national bird. Partnering with national charity Save the Kiwi, Crombie Lockwood wants to ensure that the creature’s beautiful birdsong will be heard in our wilderness forever.
Cam Maloney, Crombie Lockwood’s sponsorship and events manager, says that the Crombie Lockwood Kiwi Burrow, a brooding and incubating facility built in Taupō in 2019, has already helped to stem population decline.
“In the wild, kiwi only survive to adulthood at a 5% rate,” says Maloney. “That number reaches 65% in the burrow – well ahead of the 20% survival rate required for general population increase.”
“Kiwi only have a 5% survival rate to adulthood. But if we step in, we can get 65% of them making it.”
The Crombie Lockwood Kiwi Burrow has seen repeated success celebrating 100 hatches in its 2nd hatching season and cracking 200 hatches over the Summer of 2021/22. The burrow currently records hatching 224 kiwi since opening in 2019.
“The team tracks adult nesting kiwi and transports their eggs to the facility for incubation and hatching after around 75 days,” says Maloney. “Then they’ll raise the chicks for three to four weeks before releasing them into the predator-free Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari.”
Chicks released to Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari grow to adulthood and have chicks of their own. As the mountain begins to fi ll up with kiwi, those off spring will then be transferred to areas of the wild under predator control to either increase those in-situ populations or create new populations.
Thanks to programs like the kiwi burrow, the national icon’s endangered status is being reversed, says Maloney. It was just this year that the kiwi saw its first ever recorded increase in population, and some species saw their endangered status reclassified as not-threatened.
“Just as we’re protecting New Zealand businesses, we’re also protecting our unique and curious kiwi.” Crombie Lockwood is running an exclusive competition where one lucky CA ANZ member can win a family trip to visit the kiwi burrow and witness the team’s remarkable work first-hand.
The prize consists of flights and accommodation for four (up to two adults and two children) to Taupo, a kiwi experience at the Crombie Lockwood Kiwi Burrow and a Prezzy Card to cover expenses. Competition closes at 11.59pm on 31 August 2022.
The burrow’s 2021/2022 hatching season
- Fourteen chicks hatched in eight consecutive days in November
- One chick hatched live on television
- Two bald chicks due to an overzealous dad in the nest
- 315 feathers plucked for DNA sampling
- 4800L of peat moss used
- Five eggs x-rayed
- Two midnight visits for assisting egg or chick
Win a trip to the burrow
To enter the Kiwi Burrow competition click here. Crombie Lockwood is the New Zealand General Insurance Partner of the CA ANZ Member Benefits Program.