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Kiwi Forest and Friends – Opens 15th December 2017

A year in the making, Kiwi Forest features our stunning new kiwi nocturnal house, home to Tapu and Ipo our newly arrived Brown Kiwi. The new Kiwi Forest house provides Tapu and Ipo with a state of the art New Zealand forest setting and will immerse you in a true night-time forest experience.

Kiwi Forest also includes giant weta – Butterfly Creek is the home of the captive rear and release programme for the wetapunga – as well as other native species. The wetland walkway will take you past our newly arrived Asian Short-Clawed Otters and onto a large platform where you can view and feed hundreds of Short-Finned Eels.

Keep an eye out on social media for giveaways!

Kiwi House manager, Rebecca Moyle. Photograph by Doug Sherring, New Zealand Herald/newspix.co.nz


A magical indoor nocturnal house will be the undoubted highlight of Kiwi Forest. Two Brown Kiwi will be setting up home in what will be the most modern and high-tech nocturnal house ever constructed in New Zealand. Leaving the crocodile exhibit area you will travel down a ponga-lined boardwalk before arriving in the native exhibit building which will host a number of fascinating native exhibits including giant weta and skinks as well as a full-sized replica Moa.

There will be interactive displays and lots of interesting stuff to look at and learn all about the Kiwi habitat. From there you will pass through a bush clearing and cave – complete with simulated glow worms and cave weta  – which then leads into the nocturnal house. Huge viewing windows will provide great viewing into the nocturnal house. A super sophisticated lighting system will simulate night time and encourage these little guys to be out and active when you come to visit.

North Island Brown Kiwi


Once you leave Kiwi Forest you will head out on the wetland walkway which leads you on to our Asian Small-Clawed Otters. Five of these active and intriguing little animals will be setting up home here at Butterfly Creek in the next few months. These cheeky little guys will love splashing about in their pond and climbing up over the rocks and trees.

Chinese Small Clawed Otter


You can then head to the huge eel feeding platform which is built out over our wetland. Take the opportunity to feed the lively, squirmy eels; but please, approved food only as they don’t do too well o the wrong diet! Once you are finished feeding the eels, you will finish the loop by entering the alligator end of Dinosaur Kingdom.

Short Finned Eels

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