Join the battle to save the wildlife of Aotearoa!

Did you know it costs $8 to feed a kiwi chick for a week?
Every donation helps.

Meet rare New Zealand wildlife

Join the battle to save the wildlife of Aotearoa!

Did you know it costs $8 to feed a kiwi chick for a week?
Every donation helps.

Learn about conservation in action

Join the battle to save the wildlife of Aotearoa!

Did you know it costs $8 to feed a kiwi chick for a week?
Every donation helps.

Join the daily talks

Become a forest guardian

Rongo Te Mauri

Opening Hours

Summer Hours
9:00am – 6:00pm
(during daylight savings
last Sunday in September
to first Sunday in April)

Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre is a not-for-profit charity managing an unfenced breeding sanctuary for native wildlife.

Our 942-hectare forest is home to wild birds.
Inside our aviaries we hatch kiwi, kākā and kākāriki for release across Aotearoa New Zealand.

To make a difference, we need your help.


IMPORTANT COVID-19 UPDATE  8th September 2021

Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre is OPEN to the public 9am – 6pm daily under COVID-19 Alert Level 2 restrictions.

– Scanning or Signing in on arrival is mandatory for every visitor

– Please bring a facemask. Wearing them indoors is now a Ministry of Health requirement

– Please keep a Social Distance of 2 metres from others wherever possible

– Please remember to be patient, kind and respectful to others and be mindful of their need to Social Distance

– Please follow the directions of our staff. They know what to do and are here to help. 

If you need to get in touch with us, please email: [email protected] 


Forest pathway at Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
Campervans / EVs

There is plenty of parking space to accommodate campervans.
View our overnight campervan tours

Electric Vehicles (EVs)
We have two Type-2 EV trickle charging stations available. There is no cost to use our EV chargers however customers will be required to provide their own type-2 charging cable.

How to get here

Entrance sign at Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
View of the outside of the Visitor Centre at Pukaha National Wildlife Centre

We’re on State Highway 2 (SH2) in the middle of the lower part of the North Island of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Map showing location of Pukaha National Wildlife Centre

We’re 30kms north of Masterton, Wairarapa and 10km south of Eketahuna, Tararua.

It’s about 2 hours to drive north-east from Wellington, a little longer heading south-west from Napier, or an hour south from Palmerston North.

Wednesday morning weighing is always entertaining trying to find where little Kaweka kiwi "Brett" is hiding! This natural behaviour of digging burrows and hiding under logs is exactly what we want to see, especially with the release date is coming up!

Last week we took some feathers for a DNA test and little Brett is a girl! Might have to start calling her Brettina?
#kiwi #burrow #conservation #conservationinaction #cute #birdphotography #breedforrelease #birdsofinstagram #bird #rare #endangered #kaweka #partnership #savethekiwi
What a beautiful morning for blue sky and takahē!

Asneath and Tuatahi are best viewed from the Kākā cafe deck. A variety of native bird life also call the takahē pen home, how many can you spot? 

(Hint: look high! It's an open top enclosure so any bird can fly over!)
#takahe #feedingtime #breakfast #noms #blue #sky #morning #friday #fridayvibes #newview
This week our 4 oldest whio juveniles will be heading up to Turangi @national_trout Centre to begin their fast water training as part of the @whioforever breed for release program.

We are so excited to wish them well on the next stage of the journey and are happy the Pūkaha pair (left) get to hang out with the @rainbowspringsnz Nature Park pair (right) in their new home.

Thank you to everyone who has been part of their story so far! We will be sure to share any updates sent our way ☺️
#whio #blueduck #conservation #breedforrelease #duck #water #conservationinaction #nz #nzbirds #birdphotography #birb #ducksofinstagram #bird #birdsofinstagram #birdlovers
Rangers checked the wild kākā nestbowls today to monitor our wild population and were greeted by these two gorgeous fluff balls! After a quick health check they were safely returned into the nest. 

There are 13 nestboxes in the reserve, you might be lucky enough to spot a busy mum feeding her babies, or even see fledglings hanging close by! 
#kaka #parrot #nest #chick #cute #nzbirds #birdphotography #life #newlife #nz #wild #monitor
A northern rata bloom. You can find these stunning Christmasy flowers dotting the paths through the reserve. The giant, towering trees are full of tui and kākā competing for the sweet nectar treat! Occasionally a kākā will nip off a small branch to hold and lick all the nectar in peace and quiet over on a different tree, which is why we sometimes find them in random places! 

Be sure to look up at the Ridgeline next time you pass through to see these trees in all their glory.
#rata #red #flower #tree #native #plant #plantlife #food #sweet #nectar #plantsofinstagram #flowerstagram #flowersofinstagram #christmas #nz #nzplants #nzwild #mustsee #beautifulnature #unique #plantsmakepeoplehappy #plantsplantsplants #plantslover
Hope everyone has enjoyed their weekend! We can't believe it's less than 2 weeks until Christmas!

If you are looking for some awesome nature themed gifts come check out our new look gift shop! With something for everyone you can get your shopping sorted as well as supporting our conservation work (which includes looking after the fabulous Kahurangi!) We are online too 😁
#kokako #nz #nzbirds #bird #birdlife #christmas #birdphotography #nature #wildlife #birdsofinstagram #instabird #bird_brilliance #birdsnature #birdphoto #birdfreaks #birdnerd
To protect our whole community and to continue to operate with as few restrictions as possible under the COVID-19 Protection Framework, from 3 December 2021 all Pūkaha visitors twelve years or older must present a vaccine pass as they enter the centre. 

We understand that the requirements are an inconvenience and they may take a little time for us all to get used to the new routine for entering public spaces. 

Hopefully we have made the process as simple as possible for all of our visitors to follow and you can get out  and enjoy the wonders of the forest without delay.

There is no flexibility unfortunately. If you are not fully vaccinated, you are unable to enter. We understand this may be disappointing if you do not yet have a vaccine pass. It is disappointing for us too! Please do come back when you have both vaccinations and you have your vaccine pass ready. 

Thank you for your understanding and ongoing support during these difficult times - He waka eke noa, we are all in this together.

Ngā manākitanga
The Pūkaha Whānau

Rangitāne o Wairarapa Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
Department of Conservation and Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
Qualmark Gold Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
100% pure New Zealand Pukaha National Wildlife Centre

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