Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Eastern Bay of Plenty

We leave Auckland and head to the Miranda Coast stopping for a while before a quick visit to Thames then on to  Waihi to spend the night. At Katikati we visit the Bird gardens which were just beautiful in autumn colours. Butterflies too 

 Plenty to see along this wonderful coastline. Following Matata DOC campsite we are now heading to Whakatane.

Heading down Ohope beach this afternoon its great to see large areas taped off with good signage about the rare birds NZ dotterel and Variable oystercatcher that nest along this coastline. Dotterel and variable oystercatchers were present in pairs ready for the new breeding season.

 Its also good to see that the NZ Coastal Policy Statement is quoted in respect to controlling vehicles on beaches 'where damage to people, wildlife and other aspects of the wildlife might result'

Tomorrow we will follow the coastal road and explore the Opotiki side off the harbour staying at Ohiwa.

Looking forward to a good sunset this evening. Not only were we rewarded with great sunset but the  following morning a stunning sunrise too with clear blue skies that have lasted all day. 

The estuary is extensive with views to Whakari ( White Island) and Motuhora Island (Whale Island ) was one of the first Islands to become pest free in NZ. Its now a designated as a Wildlife sanctuary. Interesting to see several flocks of  oystercatchers flying in formation across the water to feeding sites. One of these flocks had 25 birds.

Ohiwa spit is a pretty little settlement to stay the night and I took the opportunity to climb the Ohiwa bush loop track to the Onekawa pa site which had stunning views all around. Now its time for a beach walk and then  watch the sun go down.