Rotorua Family Hidden Gem

Originally setup to fund the rehabilitation of injured Harriers, Wingspan's main conservation focus now is their breeding and release program which helps grow the extremely endangered population of NZ Falcon. There are less Falcons than Kiwis in New Zealand!


Wingspan founder Debbie, showed us through the aviaries and spoke about some of the birds on site. We then headed outside to eagerly wait for the bird show to begin.


We were greeted by Noel Hyde, head Falconer and one of New Zealand’s most talented and well respected wildlife taxidermists.


Wingspan Bird of Prey Centre Rotorua NZ


Noel was carrying a Swamp Harrier and it was enjoying tearing into a duck wing. He told us all about the bird, while giving the crowd a chance to get up close and photograph this amazing animal.


Debbie offered everyone waiting a nice warm blanket, then brought out ‘Ozzy’, the star of the flying display. Ozzy treated the crowd to some aerial acrobatics and some of the children and adults were able to feed him via a leather glove.


Family things to do in Rotorua


Ozzy is now immortalized as the official model Falcon on the ‘new’ New Zealand $20 bank note. 


Visit Wingspan and learn about New Zealand's amazing birds of prey. Time your visit to see the amazing flying display, held everyday at 2pm. The small entry fee and donations from the public all go a long way to helping fund the entire centre.