School of Biological Sciences

Kiwi Research

Dr Kristina Ramstad | Dr Andrew Digby | Rachael Abbott | Helen Taylor

Little spotted kiwi

We research New Zealand's endemic kiwi, with an emphasis on conservation applications.

Our work encompasses a wide range of aspects of kiwi ecology and evolution, from translocation management to acoustic behaviour to inbreeding. We draw on diverse research tools in both the lab and field for this work, including next-generation genomics sequencing and remote acoustic sensing.

We primarily study little spotted kiwi (Apteryx owenii) and rowi (Apteryx rowi), but much of our work is applicable to all kiwi species.

Research Projects

Our group is currently involved in the following research areas:

  • little spotted kiwi and rowi genetics
  • little spotted kiwi reproductive success
  • rowi translocation management
  • little spotted kiwi acoustic ecology

Read more about our research.


Our group comprises several researchers and students at Victoria University. We maintain active collaborations with DOC, Massey University, Zealandia, the Karori Sanctuary, and several iwi and Māori rōpu.  Our work has also been supported in multiple ways by the Bank of New Zealand Save the Kiwi Trust, the Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, and the New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology.