A fairly recent immigrant from Australia, the White-Faced Heron has become widespread throughout New Zealand and is now the most common heron.
Probably storm-blown from Australia’s east coast, the first breeding pair in New Zealand was recorded in 1940. More aggressive than its cousin, the Reef Heron (Matuku Moana), this newcomer has quickly and successfully adapted to local conditions. This integration has been so effective as to squeeze out the Reef Heron, dramatically reducing their numbers over recent years.
The White-Faced Heron’s success in establishing a strong presence can perhaps be attributed to their willingness to accept an “anything goes” diet. Small fish, crustaceans, frogs and insects are all on the menu. It feeds mainly in shallow waters, stalking and spearing its victims with its long, sharp bill. It breeds in colonies, building bulky stick nests and makes a loud croaking call.
Te Rarawa, Ngāti Paoa, Te Ātiawa
Rex Homan was born 1940 in Thames, New Zealand of Māori, Irish and Scottish ancestry. He lived in Auckland in his early years before moving to the Bay of Plenty. Rex has earned international recognition as a wood sculptor in the 1960s and 1970s and began working in bronze in the 1980s. His current work is influenced by the culture of the Pacific and displays uniqueness in its diversity of form and dramatic flow of lines. Rex has exhibited in solo, group and jury shows. He has won several national awards for “National Wood Skills” and is represented in corporate and private collections worldwide.
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