Tui are beautiful native birds that feed largely on the nectar of flowers which is facilitated by their extraordinary long tongues.
They also occasionally eat insects and may be seen fluttering around native bush with their lovely call audible.
Tauranga’s Valued Residents
Tuis are common residents in Tauranga and are easily identified with their black plumage and distinctive white tuft under their throat.
They may fly long distances, especially during winter, to find their favourite foods and they can be very territorial, aggressively chasing other birds away from good food sources. They are also capable of mimicking other bird calls and noises and one of our Tui in care was able to mimic the phone ring much to our confusion!
Caring for Injured Tui
Tui are often brought into ARRC needing medical care for a variety of reasons. Sometimes
they have broken wings or legs which we are able to set and allow to repair, with
rehabilitation they usually make a full recovery and are returned to the wild.
Unfortunately, these fractures are occasionally irreparable and these birds are humanely euthanased.
During spring we are inundated with fledgling birds. Baby Tuis are absolute characters and
we thoroughly enjoy nursing these orphans until they are ready for reintroduction into the
How you can help Tui and our other natives:
– Plant and help to conserve native species of plants and forests.
– Look after your pet cat responsibly: make sure it’s desexed, has good quality food
and doesn’t roam and hunt.
Photo credit: Janeane Joyce.