2018 Concert coming up soon

Date posted: 15-Feb-2018

Our 2018 concert will feature an afternoon of light classics and jazz courtesy of the Auckland Ph..

Wetapunga talk coming soon

Date posted: 05-Feb-2018

For the Social on 19 March the speaker will be Ben Goodwin of Auckland Zoo, who will talk about t..

Rat caught and now takahe released from pens

Date posted: 28-Jan-2018

Thankfully DOC staff Andre de Graaf and Polly Hall and their assistants have trapped the rat whic..

Your Christmas Shopping for a Song

Date posted: 04-Dec-2017

Aka - The Grand Christmas Shopping Expedition to Tiritiri Matangi Island Shop Dreading..

2018 Photo Comp opens for entries

Date posted: 27-Nov-2017

The 2018 Photo Competition is now open for entries. Click here (/2018-photo-competition-tiritiri-mat..

New reports on ruru nesting and Island conservation

Date posted: 02-Oct-2017

Two new reports have been added to the website. The first gives details of a summer students..

2018 calendars now available

Date posted: 27-Sep-2017

Our latest calendar, beautifully illustrated with images taken on the Island, is now available fo..

Guided walks for photographers

Date posted: 21-Jun-2017

For a wonderful day of wildlife photography please join us on Tiritiri Matangi Island for a Ph..

Ferry discounts for Supporters

Date posted: 18-May-2017

Tiritiri Matangi Island, the perfect winter's day trip. The birds are at their best, warm up w..

More kiwi for the Island

Date posted: 04-Apr-2017

In 1993 and 1995, sixteen little spotted kiwi were released on Tiritiri Matangi Island. The ma..

North Island Robin

Scientific name:

 Petroica longpipes

Maori Name:




Conservation status:

Not threatened

Mainland status:

Widespread and locally common in central North Island


18cm, 35g


Around 3 Years (however, oldest recorded 16 yrs) 


July - December  


Mainly invertebrates, small fruits in season

First introduced to Tiri:


Population on Tiri:

Varies according to season, usually 100+

Total population:

Locally abundant

North Island Robin - photographer: Peter CrawThe North Island Robin is considered a separate species from the South Island and Stewart Island Robins. It is characterised by dark slate grey upper parts with an irregular shaped patch of white on its chest, long thin legs and an upright stance. The female is generally browner and lighter coloured than the male.

Robins are found mainly in mature native forests, common in beech or podocarp forest, and in manuka or kanuka scrub. They are territorial all year round but especially so in the breeding season. They usually mate with the same partner year after year.

Robins are extremely bold and fearless and will approach humans with curiosity. They feed on insects, grubs and worms on the forest floor and are often seen to tremble one leg to cause a vibration in the ground to induce prey to move. They can be enticed to approach closer by clearing a patch of leaf litter to expose potential food. 

North Island Robin - photographer: Peter Craw

The adult male has a loud and clear song consisting of a variety of simple notes strung together and often sustained for 30 minutes with short pauses. They also have a short 'chirp' contact call.

New Zealand robins, like their close relatives the Australian robins, were so-named because of superficial similarities to the European robin. As well as their endearing tendency to approach anyone likely to disturb invertebrates in the soil, their shape and stance resemble those of the European robin. They are not closely related, however, the European robin belonging to the thrush family.

You can find out lots more about the North Island robin at New Zealand Birds Online.


Photography by:  Peter Craw

eferences: Heather, B.D.; Robertson, H.A. 2000 The Field Guide to the Birds of New Zealand. Auckland, Viking.