West Coast Birdlife – The Bellbird

West Coast Birdlife – The Bellbird

by | Sep 6, 2015

The Bellbird is often heard singing in the tree tops while out on our kayaking trips, but is rarely seen due to its camouflage green coloring which hides the bird perfectly in the foliage of the forest.

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Here are some interesting facts about the Bellbird:

 

  • Just like people have different accents depending on where they live, the bellbirds song also varies slightly from place to place. There is also evidence that male bellbirds also sing different songs to that of the female.

 

  • The bellbirds are nectar eaters, which means that they are important pollinators of many New Zealand tree’s such as the Kowhai tree, the Flax bush, the Mistletoe and also the Fuscia.

 

  • The main threats to the bellbird include rats, stoats, and possums which all eat the eggs of the birds as well as attacking young chicks.

 

  • Bellbirds are endemic to New Zealand, therefore they are found nowhere else in the world. In fact approximately 80% of New Zealand’s birds are only found in New Zealand.

 

  • Although it can be difficult to distinguish between male and female bellbirds, the female bellbird will always have a light yellow stripe on her cheek, and the male bellbird has black on his outer wing.

 

  • When the early European explorer Captain James Cook arrived to New Zealand he described the song of the bellbird to be “a wild melody infinitely superior to any other that we have heard, like small bells exquisitely tuned.”

 

 

So come along and treat yourself to a kayak tour on the lake surrounded by a forest full of bellbirds!

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Here are some shots from some of our most recent trips, we’ve been treated to rainbows, fresh snow and sunshine all at once. Goodbye winter hello spring!

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Bookings for the summer are starting to stack up quickly – be sure you book ahead if you’re heading over to the Coast!

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