Whio are nifty native ducks. You may have seen a picture of one on a $10 note! These rapid-running birds need fast-flowing, clean rivers to thrive, so they’re an excellent indicator of a healthy river. If you see whio on a river or stream, the water is likely to be in a very healthy state.
Whio are a threatened species, with only around 3,000 left in the wild. In some places around Aotearoa there are groups of volunteers giving whio a helping hand to ensure their survival.
In 2018 we travelled to Tūrangi, on the southern shores of Lake Taupō. Climb aboard for a rafting experience on the Tongariro River and look for whio.
Consider the following questions. You could talk about your ideas with your favourite people at home or online.
- How many predator traps do the Blue Duck Project look after? How many kilometres of the Tongariro River do they trap?
- What are the three main predators for whio on this part of the Tongariro?
- What are some ways you could help the plants and animals living in, on, and around freshwater environments?
- What does this video make you wonder about a freshwater river or lake near your place?
Toilet duck whio
Try this KCC activity and make a model whio out of an old toilet duck bottle!
Ask an adult to post a picture of your craftiness on Instagram. Use the hashtags #learnztrips, #whioforever, or email a photo to LEARNZtrips. Tell us about your discoveries and creations.
We’ll share some of your images on our Instagram space @learnztrips.
Want to know more?
Find out more about the values and importance of freshwater. Consider the threats to our freshwater environments and how you could help.