Late in January we posted the story of a Tiny Kiwi Egg found in the central north island, since then the egg hatched a Tiny Kiwi (on the 4th of February).
Believed to be the smallest North Island brown kiwi, weighing just 173.5 grams, it hatched unaided at Rotorua’s Rainbow Springs Kiwi Encounter.
There were fears for the chick as the egg, previously dubbed Mini, weighed just 217 grams when it arrived from Whirinaki Forest – compared to the 442.1g of a sibling egg.
Kiwi Encounter has hatched more than 1300 North Island brown kiwi eggs and previously the smallest chick, McMurdo, whose egg was 292g, weighed 238.5g when it emerged.
Kiwi Encounter husbandry manager Claire Travers said “The little chick hatched all on its own and there was a team of very excited staff … one staff member even turned up straight out of bed on her day off, she was so keen for a look.”
Naming rights for the tiny chick were up for auction on the Trade Me website and there are plans to release the bird as part of a founding population at the Otanewainuku Kiwi Trust, near Tauranga.
Naming rights of the North Island brown kiwi were auctioned on Trade Me and raised $1,000 for the National Kiwi Trust.
Now the chick has a name—Myfie. However, proceeds from the auction will only cover around 50% off the costs involved with raising a chick before releasing it into the wild.
Myfie is expected to stay at the centre for between 4-6 months before being released back into the wild by DOC staff. In the interim, Myfie will continue to be monitored daily and can be viewed during Kiwi Encounter tours, which are a major source of fundraising for the kiwi hatchery.