Monday, April 12, 2010

Muriwai Regional Park

This is one of the most beautiful beach in Auckland and  it is call Muriwai. If those gannet birds can build a home on the Muriwai cliffs with a multi-million dollar sea view out of there, who would think otherwise on the beauty of this location? This is definitely a must visit location for bird watchers, surfers and beach lovers. Not drinkers, the crown beach has an alcohol ban on it. Sorry for those who loves to feel be abit high in beautiful places, this is not the place for you. I think the toilet is around the corner for those who puke. ;op

Muriwai is "a windswept rugged coastline, 60km of surf beach and rolling dunes of black sand characterise Muriwai Beach, making it one of Auckland's most popular west coast beaches."



Muriwai "domain was expanded over the years and became Muriwai Regional Park in 1969. Muriwai Regional Park extends from Maori Bay in the south up Muriwai Beach for 8km" and is also a home to one of the three gannets colonies based on the mainland in New Zealand.

The Muriwai Regional Park "includes the spectacular Takapu (gannet) Refuge at Otakamiro Point, one of only three mainland gannet colonies in New Zealand. The best time to visit the gannets is between October in February. The chicks hatch in November then leave for Australia at 15 weeks old returning to breed when they are 3 and seven years old."



The birds return here between July and October to re-establish contact with their life-long mates. After mating, one egg is laid and incubated in shifts by both birds until the gannet chick is born, naked and blind, 45 days later.

Gannet family or "Sulidae is related to the shags and pelicans and contains mainly the tropical boobies. There are three subspecies, bassana of the North Atlantic, capensis of southern Africa and serrator of New Zealand and Australia. Morus serrator breeds in New Zealand, the Norfolk group of islands and Australia. In New Zealand they breed in 28 colonies, the largest being Gannet Island, west of Kawhai, and White Island in the Eastern Bay of Plenty."


History
Maori occupied the area for centuries. Ngati Te Kahupara, a sub tribe of both Te Kawerau a Maki and Ngati Whatua descent, lived there from the 1700s until the late 1800s. They lived mainly at Otakamiro Point, at Oneonenui in the headwaters of the Okiritoto Stream (Totoanui Falls) and at Korekore Pa (Pulpit Rock). Two pa (defended settlements) were located on Otakamiro Point.

Land was sold to European settlers and in 1909 Sir Edwin Mitchelson, helped establish the forerunner to the present park, the Motutara Domain. Mitchelson built a large homestead and extensive garden overlooking Otakamiro Point. Many of the exotic and native trees Mitchelson planted are within the park - look out for them amongst the regenerating coastal forest.

The gannet family or Sulidae is related to the shags and pelicans and contains mainly the tropical boobies. There are three subspecies, bassana of the North Atlantic, capensis of southern Africa and serrator of New Zealand and Australia. Morus serrator breeds in New Zealand, the Norfolk group of islands and Australia. In New Zealand they breed in 28 colonies, the largest being Gannet Island, west of Kawhai, and White Island in the Eastern Bay of Plenty.

As usual, I have provided a map above on the location of Muriwai and the gannets colony.

Reference(s):
Auckland Regional Council. (n.d.). Muriwai. Retrieved on April 12, 2010 from http://www.arc.govt.nz/parks/our-parks/parks-in-the-region/muriwai/

New Zealand Birds. (January 15, 2009.). Takapu, the Australasian gannet. Retrieved on April 12, 2010 from http://www.nzbirds.com/birds/takapu.html

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3 comments:

Lean said...

Checking out ere. =)

kenwooi said...

what's so infamous about it when it's so nice? i think it should have been just "famous" =D

Kia Tang said...

More interesting photos coming up. Stay tune or follow me, guys.

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