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Animated gif of New Zealand bird species
Tuatara eating a bird

Birds of New Zealand

New Zealand has lost more bird species than any other nation. Of the those remaining we now have a higher percentage at risk than any other nation. The South Island saddleback and yellow-eyed penguin are now very rare. Kapapo numbers have recently increased from 50 in 1995 to 126 by 2012. The South Island kokako was listed as extinct in 2007. Takahe number about 200. Whio are recovering, as are the black robin that were reduced to one breeding pair. The black stilt have increased in number from 23 in 1981 to 55 by 2005. The storm petrel was first seen in 2003, and where they breed is still unknown. Tuatara photograph © Dr Paddy Ryan.

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Nationally Critical

Nationally Endangered

Nationally Vulnerable

Serious Decline

Gradual Decline


Range Restricted

Data Deficient


The pages below do not fit within the categories above, however, they contain some excellent photographs so will remain on the site.

Data for the threat category lists was sourced from:

Hitchmough, R., Bull, L., & Cromarty, P. (comps). (2007). New Zealand threat classification system lists:2005. Wellington, New Zealand: Department of Conservation.