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We’re upgrading Cornwall Park’s bird aviary

We’re upgrading our feathered friends’ home at Cornwall Park, as part of the park’s 2019 Reserve Management Plan. We sought advice from Massey University experts when planning the upgrade to ensure we provide the best setting for the birds. The new aviary has been designed with that advice in mind.


Mate, the cockatoo, is happy in his new SPCA-approved Northland home

Work taking flight to improve Cornwall Park aviary

Work kicks off in May on a Cornwall Park aviary upgrade, designed to ensure its residents feel like a bunch of fluffies (so to speak). We sought expert advice from Massey University on the best conditions for the aviary birds. A landscape architect has applied those recommendations when designing the aviary.

Feedback from the community during the Cornwall Park Reserve Management Plan consultation was that they wanted the aviary to remain, so the upgrade was included in the RMP adopted by Council in March 2019.

The two large parrots, Mate and Stevie Nicks, who used to live at the aviary, have spread their wings to their new SPCA-approved Northland home where they will remain. (Read more at the ‘Related Stories’ below.)

Therefore, this upgrade will focus on improving the existing aviary without changing the overall footprint.

Massey University have provided us with recommendations on the aviary conditions that are best for the birds. In line with that advice, we’ll be making a number of changes to the birds’ environment:

Trees and plants for perching and pecking at 

Just as us humans like to stretch out, space out and have a run around, the aviary birds need plenty of space and plants for perching, foraging and (for some) pulling apart branches. Otherwise, they can get scratchy like we do!

To encourage these natural behaviours, we’ll be planting specific varieties of trees and ground covers and pruning existing plants. We’ll also place temporary tree branches in some enclosures for birds to pull apart.

We will space the remaining birds out more to fill the (now empty) cages of former aviary residents Mate and Stevie Nicks, and remove partial partitions to allow the birds to have free flight runs.

When they're 'feeling peckish'

We wouldn’t want to eat the same meal of cereal and grains day after day, and guess what, neither do birds. We’ll be switching their diets up to include superior product mixes (with less bread), ensuring water is available when offering dry mix, and adding vegetables, fruit and fresh flowering plants (i.e. bottlebrush or Manuka).

Cornwall Park 2022 LR 11

As the birds are from different countries and none are native, the artist has chosen a nature theme for the mural rather than one that reflects their geographical origins.

Water to splash (and flap) around in

During our hot, hot Hawke’s Bay summers, everybird loves to ruffle their feathers and splash around in the water. We’re installing misting spray and water features for our birds to keep cool in.

Other upgrade plans kicking off soon

  • Artist Brandon Blair is painting a green, natural themed mural at the lower concrete strip beneath the mesh (work is almost done on this – check out the picture on the right!)
  • Replacing the wire mesh
  • Repairing the floor
  • Removing an English looking water feature that is not consistent with other features of the aviary.

Work will take about six months.



Related stories

Cornwall Park aviary enclosures to be enhanced

Cornwall Park aviary enclosures to be enhanced

The enclosures at Cornwall Park’s aviary are to be improved with funding approved to enhance the facility for the...

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Concept plans underway for Cornwall Park aviary upgrade

Concept plans underway for Cornwall Park aviary upgrade

The upgrade of the Cornwall Park aviary is making progress with a draft concept plan created for bigger, enhanced e...

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Planning underway to improve Cornwall Park aviary

Planning underway to improve Cornwall Park aviary

The much-loved birds of the Cornwall Park aviary are to have their environment expanded and enriched in response to...

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