The Yellow-eyed
Penguin Trust

News & Events

Tavora Reserve Closure

Tavora Reserve (Bobby’s Head), near Palmerston, will be closed from 1 November 2017 to 28 February 2018 for seasonal management purposes.

In 1993 the Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust secured this land for the purpose of improving and enhancing the breeding habitat for yellow-eyed penguins / hoiho present. At the time of purchase th

ere were very low natural values remaining. Intensive farming practices over the past decades had destroyed much of the natural vegetation.

Following a severe predation episode and a landslide in the late 1990s which killed several yellow-eyed penguins, breeding pairs have only numbered between 1 – 3 pairs.

Last summer, beach observations were undertaken and as many as ten hoiho were seen on the South Beach. This shows there is a real possibility that breeding numbers would increase if the right management regimes were implemented. At the same time, visitors were observed blocking hoiho leaving and arriving and following birds in order to obtain photographs.

The Trust believes that this disturbance by visitors to their breeding area is detrimental to nesting success. Therefore the Trust will close the reserve during the crucial period of November – February, ultimately giving hoiho the least disturbance.

The Trust seeks support from locals and the general public to help ensure this closure is respected to give hoiho the best chance of survival.

Hoiho numbers have, for the past 2 years, been at their lowest in 25 years, and all possible management regimes to assist their survival, need to be implemented.

Any enquiries about this closure can be made directly to the Trust via email


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