Family rescues stranded kererū from ocean peril

7:05 pm on 30 May 2023
Moana the kererū

Moana the kererū is now recovering in a nest at Wellington Zoo. Photo: Supplied / Kererū Discovery

Curiosity got the better of one Wellington whānau who ended up saving the life of a kererū stuck out at sea.

Guy Marshall, 12, had spent hours fishing at Eastbourne beach on Sunday when he noticed a floating object which he thought looked like a duck decoy.

Later that day the rest of his whānau went along for a swim despite the cold and noticed the object was still there.

Guy's mother, Kendall Marshall, said her husband was curious to know what it was so he swam out to investigate.

"My husband, he swam out about 50 metres offshore and realised it was a kererū. So the kererū was very happy to be cradled by my husband, Jay, and he brought it back to shore. A lot of people at that point were out dog walking and walking along the promenade so they're all very interested to see my husband with this kererū," she said.

Moana the kererū

People at the beach on Sunday were intrigued by the bird. Photo: Supplied / Kererū Discovery

The couple have previously been ironman athletes while their son is a surfer as well as a fisherman.

"We were all just fascinated as to what it was so curiosity got the better of us."

She said the bird happily clutched onto her husband's arm while he swam back to shore with it.

"I think she was just very thankful for being rescued and even when my husband walked the bird up the beach, the bird was just quite happily sitting in his arms with people all looking and fascinated."

They took the kererū now named Moana back to their home and made a sanctuary out of a box for it and decorated it with greenery.

They bathed Moana to help take the salt water off her and gave her fresh water.

"She quite happily sat in this little box in the garage until Tony [Stoddard from Kererū Discovery] came along to rescue her," Marshall said.

Stoddard has taken Moana to a nest at Wellington Zoo.

Kererū Discovery took to Twitter to post about the rescue saying Moana would have died if it was not for the family who rescued her because her wings are not waterproof like seabirds.

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