Support the Great Kererū Count 2019

$12,090 of $15,000 raised
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Donation Total: $25.00

About Urban Wildlife Trust and the Great Kererū Count

Urban Wildlife Trust is a not for profit organisation connecting people with urban wildlife through citizen science, technology & social media. The Trust aims to help restore, sustain and enhance the mauri of urban nature, and ensure native wildlife is an integral part of people’s daily life.

For the last five years, the Great Kererū Count has been New Zealand’s largest citizen science project. The aim of the project is to develop a statistically significant understanding of kererū population trends across New Zealand. Given the ecological importance of kererū, this information is critical not just for protecting this species, but for ensuring the vitality of our forest ecosystems for future generations.

An additional three years of data gathered by citizen scientists is required in order to have a statistically robust and nationally significant data set which will inform key conservation activities to enable kererū to thrive across different landscapes of New Zealand, including urban areas.

The Great Kererū Count is a collaborative endeavour between Urban Wildlife Trust’s Kererū Discovery project, Wellington City Council, Victoria University of Wellington, Dunedin City Council, iNaturalist New Zealand and thousands of citizen scientists nationwide.

The Great Kererū Count – citizen science at work

Kererū are known as the gardeners-of-the-skies and play a crucial role in dispersing seeds of large native trees like tawa, taraire and mataī. They are the only bird left in New Zealand that can distribute these large seeds and help keep native forests growing.

Kererū are iconic, easy to recognise, culturally significant and much loved by many New Zealanders.

For 10 days each year, thousands of New Zealander’s make observations about the presence or absence of kererū, their location and their behaviour. This data is collected and collated by i-Naturalist NZ and data analysis is carried out by Dr Stephen Hartley and Dr Jon Sullivan, scientists from Victoria University and Lincoln University.

Kererū are protected birds and endemic to New Zealand. Kererū numbers today are much lower than the flocks reported from 50-100 years ago. Despite this, they do not have formal threatened status. This means that the Great Kererū Count is the only centralised data gathered to monitor the national trend of this significant bird.

We are proud to be supported by Wellington City Council and Dunedin City Council where together with a contribution to the Great Kererū Count. Wellington City Council also donates 1000 native trees and plants each year that help feed kererū in people’s gardens within Wellington City. During the 2018 Count, Nelson City Council took up the same initiative giving away hundreds of native plants to the local community.

How can I support the Great Kererū Count?

  1. Each year we a request out to everyone in New Zealand to take part in the Great Kererū Count which will allow us to gather data and information about kererū.
  2. Make a donation to help us deliver the Great Kererū Count. Each year takes over 800+ person-hours to deliver the count across New Zealand with the support and generosity of many organisations that give up their time for free to make this one of New Zeland’s largest ongoing citizen science projects.
  3. Become a major sponsor of the project and help us achieve our 8-year goal to collect the most robust data possible. We have many supporters around New Zealand that donate time to keep this project running as smoothly as possible – supporters such as iNaturalist NZZealandia, Landcare Research, Department of Conservation, Forest & Bird and many other organisations across New Zealand. Becoming a major sponsor would help us with the ongoing costs associated with such a large scale project and deliver excellent opportunities for media exposure and a meaningful partnership. If you think this project is a good fit for your organisation, then please feel free to contact us for more information.
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Big thanks to our donors for supporting this year’s Great Kererū Count


Paul Frater

$25.00 September 22, 2019

Nelson City Council

$2,000.00 August 5, 2019

“Nelson City Council’s Nelson Nature programme is delighted to support the Great Kererū Count. Every year we see more people becoming engaged with nature through the Great Kereru Count, and we really value the way the count supports community efforts to protect habitat and control predators.”


Dunedin City Council

$5,000.00 June 4, 2019

“It’s fun to count our kererū and see our community inspired to protect them. It’s all part of having a healthy environment we care about.


Tumbleweed Tees

$65.00 May 5, 2019

Tumbleweed Tees happily supporting the Great Kererū Count with donations from kererū T-shirt sales.


Wellington City Council

$5,000.00 March 25, 2019

Wellington City Council is proud to be supporting this citizen science project dedicated to gathering vital data to help protect kererū