Totally out of order now as we go back to Ohaupo and our stay at Jacana B&B. This is one place I personally love to stay at because I can photograph birds from the deck outside our room – no walking required! The setting is just lovely. Jacana is built beside a large stand of trees at the top of a slope, so the birds are at eye level. Beyond the trees is a large lake and a wetland restoration project.
Lee and John who own Jacana have a passion for nature and a vision for their property. The house is only a few years old so it is still settling into its surroundings with new plantings continuing to be added. The birds however have already made it home.
Each morning I was woken up to the call of the shining cuckoo. It was teasing me because every time I managed to spot where it was and get the camera, it would fly off. In all the time we were there I only managed one image of it and just as I clicked the shutter it turned its back to me!
These images were all taken from the deck and they were not the only birds I saw. Along with the grey warblers, fantails and chaffinches, there was a kingfisher that was constantly taunting me as it called out to its mate, and the tui population is large. It really is a treasure of a place for people like me who find walking difficult.
Ohaupo is also reasonably close to Sanctuary Mountain which is another predator free wildlife sanctuary surrounded with a fence to keep out the pests that endanger our native birds. It is definitely worth a visit but alas the hills were quite steep and I didn’t get very far myself. I am happy to have been there though and seen what they are doing for the environment.
Lastly a blatant plug for Jacana, firstly because it is an awesome place to stay with luxury accommodation, but also because Lee and John have been friends of mine for well over 20 years now and I would like to thank them for their hospitality. Please visit their website http://www.stayatohaupo.nz and Lee’s book site http://kimberwrite.wordpress.com/