On the way to Havelock North we made a stop at the Pekapeka Wetlands. The last couple of visits here have been disappointing but forever the optimist I keep going back. The paths through the wetlands have been expanded since my last visit and the vegetation has been trimmed back. Both these things have made it somewhat easier to see the bird life.
There is a covering of duckweed over most of the water and also a lot of blanket weed, we saw a large amount of small fish, the dabchicks are breeding – always a good sign – and there was a good number of different bird species scattered around the wetlands. We spotted white-faced herons, shags, black swans, welcome swallows, coots, several different ducks, pied stilts, and dabchicks.
The dabchick family we came across were very cute as we watched them dive in the duckweed. When they resurfaced they were covered in bits of weed but that didn’t seem to care and just continued about their foraging for food. We managed to get quite close them before they decided we had enough images.
We also saw a large number of dragonflies and damselflies. Very quick when moving and hard to photograph among the weed we gave it a try all the same. These images are of a pair mating, they are interesting in that they are both different colours. One red, one green – they are very well camouflaged when they land on the weed.
After about an hour at the wetlands we headed back to the car to complete our journey to Havelock North.