In the last couple of days a local spotted the elusive Matuku-hūrepo, Australasian Bittern only a couple of metres from the north track off Reay Mackay Grove.
A large, stocky heron with a thick neck, heavy yellowish bill and relatively short yellow legs. The beige plumage has dark brown streaking and mottling, and there is a buff eye-stripe on the mainly dark head.
Keep your eyes peeled for this bird. It’s a similar size and weight to a Peihana, Pheasant.
See also Australasian Bittern - eBird which has local (Horowhenua) sightings, photos and audio. Photos below by Kezna Cameron.