"Gannet Colony at Muriwai Beach" Muriwai Beach by trees100ft

Muriwai Beach Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 6 photos

Motutara Island

Muriwai Beach is located on the western coast, 1 hour drive north of Auckland. It is easy to access.

The gannet colony at Muriwai Beach is a fascinating place to visit for nature lovers.

There are 2 viewing decks, and the birds are really close up. The nesting area is only a few meters below the viewing deck. Due to a lack of space, some of the birds will even nest on tiny spaces next to the railings.

The story of how the gannets nest and migrate is posted at the site. It is uplifting to read how the 'teenage' gannets will make the gruelling journey northward to Australia, stay a few years 'to see the world' before returning to Muriwai Beach to nest and raise their families. This is truly a story that is mirrored in real human life in many a young Kiwi in remote beautiful New Zealand.

You will get an exhilarating feeling at Muriwai Beach. The winds are strong and biting cold, the waves pounding against the rocks, and the sudden steep drops in the cliffs make this one of the highlights of my trip to Northland, NZ.

All neatly spaced out

The birds are less than 10 meters below on a wide ledge. See how the nests are evenly spread out.

There is a reason for this. By day, one of the pair of parents will fly out to sea to hunt for food for its partner and their chick, while the other stay on the nest. The extra space is created around its nest so that the hunting partner has room to rest when all the birds return after a hard day's work. Isn't that sweet!

The Australasian Gannet

This bird was squeezed out on the main ledge, and thus built its nest just next to the viewing deck.

Excellent information about gannets at Muriwai can be found here:
http://www.scitec.auckland.ac.nz/~hafner/gannets/

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Great place to see first hand a gannet colony
  • Cons:There are fools who stone these birds. Leave them alone!
  • In a nutshell:Close-up with nature
  • Last visit to Muriwai Beach: Dec 2003
  • Intro Updated Mar 28, 2005
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trees100ft

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