Ngā Manu has a diverse range of native animals and over 700 native plant species.

A Map of Ngā Manu Nature Reserve
A Map of Ngā Manu Nature Reserve

Discover a unique habitat for wildlife – Ngā Manu covers approximately 14 hectares and contains the largest remnant of coastal lowland swamp forest on the Kāpiti Coast.


The animal life at Ngā Manu is a mix of both wild and enclosed species. Up to 60 different bird species come and go around the wetlands, bush and surroundings.

See New Zealand’s unique prehistoric reptile, the tuatara, along with geckos, wetas and our native freshwater eels (tuna). See the kiwi – the distinctive New Zealander’s icon, tūī, wood pigeon (kererū), fantail (pīwakawaka), kākāriki, kākā, kea, scaup, brown teal (pāteke) blue duck (Whio), paradise duck, and many other native birds.


A plant lover could spend hours taking in the different plant life at Ngā Manu. Learn about our threatened native species. Discover a huge range of flora, from native grasses, orchids and silver ferns through to swamp maire, pukatea, kohekohe and 400-year-old kahikatea.

Other attractions include:

  • Information Centre and Shop – View educational displays that change regularly to reflect the seasons. Talk to our knowledgeable staff, enjoy an ice cream or snack and choose a souvenir to take home.
  • Tours, Talks,  Group Packages, Education Packages , Ranger for the Day Experience and Kiwi Night Encounters – Make the most of your visit to Ngā Manu.
  • Nocturnal House – See kiwi and tuatara and learn about the predators that hunt our native wildlife.
  • Walk-Through Aviaries – Get up close and personal with our native birds.
  • Scaup Dive Tank – Watch these incredible native ducks underwater in their environment.
  • Wildlife Ponds – View a range of native water fowl and introduced species in picturesque surroundings.
  • Bush Walk – Paths are easily walked and are generally wheelchair and pushchair friendly.
  • Butterfly Garden – Learn about the plants that attract butterflies and spot monarch, admiral and copper butterflies in the summer season.
  • Lookout Tower – Climb to the top for a wonderful view of the reserve and Tararua Ranges.
  • Picnic & Barbeque Areas – Bring your lunch to enjoy among the wildlife with fabulous views. Hire our gas Barbeque or book BBQ Island for your group.
  • Conservation and Education Centre – Provides a classroom away from school or creates the perfect Wedding and function venue.
  • Theo’s Cottage Accommodation – Stay a night or two at Ngā Manu and enjoy the peace of the evening and dawn.