The boulder reefs that dominate the Taranaki coastline provide ideal habitat for reef herons.Report a Sighting
NZ Threat Classification: Nationally endangered.
NZ Population: Only 300 to 500 birds.
Habitat: Rocky shoreline and estuaries.
Food: Small fish, crustaceans and worms.
Nest: September to December.
Main threats: Coastal development and disturbance by people/dogs.
ID Tip: Looks like white-faced heron. Reef heron has yellow eyes and bill. White-faced heron has a white face (adult) and black eyes and bill.
Click the map below to view sightings
The Project Hotspot team has discovered that individual reef herons can be identified by their distinctive leg markings. As a result, nine different reef herons have been identified in Taranaki to date and we have been able to track their movements around the Taranaki coastline.