The Wetlands

Links the garden to the waters of the Hauraki Gulf. With over 15,000 native seedlings planted since 2002 the large area offers refuge to a diverse range of native and visiting wildlife.

The Wetlands is on average about 300mm deep and 14 hectares in area. The Lake slopes down to 2 metres deep and is about 3.3 hectares in area. The difference in depth creates habitat for different types of birds (wading, dabbling and diving).


The Wetlands walk includes a one hour loop walk around the lake and offers the chance to see some of New Zealand's wetland birds and aquatic life. Keep an eye out for:


New Zealand Scaup

Endemic small diving duck, dark and squat, with a rounded profile that looks a lot like a bath toy. Male is quite stunning with its dark plumage and bright yellow eyes.


Pukeko (Australian Swamphen)

Prolific breeder and can become destructive to other wetland species and plants. Seen mainly on land but they can also fly and swim.



Imported around the 1870’s and has become the most common water fowls in NZ. They have competitively excluded the Native Grey Duck from most Wetlands having hybridised with them so much, they can be hard to tell apart.


Paradise Shellduck

Endemic to NZ and is a noisy duck. The female is more colourful with a white head and they will pair for life.


Black Swan

Australian but common throughout New Zealand. The male is larger than the female, and being herbivores feed mainly on aquatic plant life.


Canada Goose

Imported in 1905, it is a herbivore that prefers short grass. It has become a problem in New Zealand and can be hunted all year round.


Grey Teal

A small grey/brown duck about the same size as a Scaup. It is a protected species in NZ and is under threat from predators which take the ducklings. The nesting boxes on poles in the Wetlands are for the Grey Teal.


New Zealand Dabchick

Endemic and under threat from predators. This little Grebe is quite comical to watch when swimming around with chicks on their backs.

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