The first captive-raised kakariki ever to be set free on the New Zealand mainland were released into the Abel Tasman National Park on Wednesday.
Twelve of the yellow-crowned parakeet were released as part of Project Janszoon and the Department of Conservation's 30-year partnership to restore the ecology of the area.
The young kakariki were bred at Lochmara Resort in Queen Charlotte Sound from wild adult birds taken from Long Island in the Marlborough Sounds.
They were transferred to an aviary in the Abel Tasman National Park two weeks ago in order to adjust to their new environment.
Project Janszoon director Devon McLean said the trust had reached a milestone where it felt the high altitude part of the park was safe to start bringing native birds back.