Landcare Research - Manaaki Whenua

Landcare-Research -Manaaki Whenua

Petrel populations

The Oi (Grey-faced petrel, Pterodroma macroptera gouldi) is a taonga for both the Hauraki and Ngāti Awa communities, and is considered a keystone species to the ecosystems on the Ruamāhua (Aldermen) Islands and Moutohora (Whale Island).

Hauraki Māori have expressed their desire to resume their kaitiaki (guardian) role over the Aldermen Islands by actively engaging their people, in collaboration with the Department of Conservation (DOC), in the management of this island ecosystem and the harvest of this keystone species. Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa have also expressed their desire to review the current status of the oi population on Moutohora, and determine whether it is recovering after the removal of rats in 1987.

To provide the requested management advice, the factors that influence and regulate Oi population growth need to be identified and the mechanisms of change understood. This will be crucial to conservation management on the islands and the wider marine environment and for assessing the viability of developing the oi harvest as a resource in the future.


  • Towns DR, Bellingham PJ, Mulder CPH, Lyver PO 2012. A research strategy for biodiversity conservation on New Zealand’s offshore islands. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 36(1): 1-20.
  • Jones CJ, Clifford H, Fletcher D, Cuming P, Lyver POB 2011. Survival and age-at-first-return estimates for grey-faced petrels (Pterodroma macroptera gouldi) breeding on Mauao and Motuotau Island in the Bay of Plenty, New Zealand. Notornis 58: 71-80.
  • Lyver POB, Jones C, Moller H 2009. Looking past the wallpaper : considerate evaluation of traditional environmental knowledge by science. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand 39(4): 219-223.
  • Moller H, Charleton K, Knight B, Lyver P 2009. Traditional ecological knowledge and scientific inference of prey availability: harvests of sooty shearwater (Puffinus griseus) chicks by Rakiura Maori. New Zealand journal of zoology 36(3): 259-274.
  • Moller H, Fletcher D, Johnson PN, Bell BD, Flack D, Bragg C, Scott D, Newman J, McKechnie S, Lyver PO 2009. Changes in sooty shearwater (Puffinus griseus) abundance and harvesting on the Rakiura Titi Islands. New Zealand journal of zoology 36(3): 325-341.
  • Moller H, Lyver PO, Bragg C, Newman J, Clucas R, Fletcher D, Kitson J, McKechnie S, Scott D, Rakiura Titi Island Administering Body 2009. Guidelines for cross-cultural Participatory Action Research partnerships: a case study of a customary seabird harvest in New Zealand. New Zealand journal of zoology 36(3): 211-241.
  • Lyver POB, Davis J, Ngamane L, Anderson A, Clarkin P 2008. Hauraki Maori matauranga for the conservation and harvest of titi, Pterodroma macroptera Gouldi. Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania 142(1): 149-159.
  • MacLeod CJ, Adams J, Lyver PO 2008. At-sea distribution of satellite-tracked grey-faced petrels, Pterodroma macroptera gouldi, captured on the Ruamaahua (Aldermen) Islands, New Zealand. Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania 142(1): 73-88.
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