Gannet Colony

Fascinating wildlife encounter

Experience you own personal encounter with the magnificent gannets at the world’s largest and most accessible mainland Gannet colony in the beautiful Hawke’s Bay.

The Gannet Colony is located at Cape Kidnappers/Te Kauwae-a-Māui Gannet Reserve, with a spectacular views over Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand. The reserve is a thriving environment for nesting and breeding and home to an estimated 20,000 birds, with a nesting history going back into the 1870’s.

Visit the Gannet colony and you will be mesmerized by the spectacular birds mostly white, with distinctive eye marking, gorgeous golden plumage on their heads and necks, and black flight feathers at the wing tips. Watch the seabirds in their natural habitat –nesting, preening, dancing, swooping and diving into the blue ocean right before your eyes.

Every year around July, adult gannets arrive at Cape Kidnappers to begin courtship and nest building. They build their nests ready for the arrival of the chicks during December and January. Between September and December, the birds nest and hatch their young. Gannet viewing season is usually from September to April.

Take a guided tours to see the largest mainland Gannet colony in the world. It takes you through spectacular coastlines, working farms, native bush and to the natural reserve within metres of the magnificent gannets. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get almost face to face with these fascinating gannets – it is an experience you do not want to miss.

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Clifton 4172
Cape Kidnappers/Te Kauwae-a-Māui Gannet Reserve


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