Exploring nature

Horizons Regional Council controls introduced predators and environmental weeds to protect the native plants and animals at Tōtara Reserve.

As a result, native bird species like tūī, pīwakawaka (fantail), tauhou (wax-eye), ruru (morepork), korimako (bellbird), kōtare (kingfisher), kererū (New Zealand wood pigeon), miromiro (North Island tomtit) and pōpokatea (whitehead) can be found throughout the Reserve.

You’ll often see or hear them amongst the many native plant species also found here, including the mighty tōtara, mataī, rimu and kahikatea. This native bush is also home to a number of wētā ‘motels’, which are human-made structures designed to allow our iconic native insect to crawl in and stay safe from predators.

On warm summer evenings, make sure to look out for the puriri moth (New Zealand’s largest moth with a wingspan of 15cm) or hunt for glowworms.