Road cone-moving kea get their very own gym

  • 10/01/2018

The kea who caused a ruckus moving cones around in roadworks near Fiordland's Homer Tunnel have been given their very own gym.

The Department of Conservation (DoC), Downers NZ, Canterbury University and the Kea Conversation Trust have teamed up to bring the native bird a play area.

It's hoped the area, kitted out with several objects to play with, will distract them from the dangers of the road and also stop the birds from causing any damage.

In 2016 the Milford Road Alliance was left puzzled when workers arrived at work to the road cones in "odd places", but once they reviewed CCTV footage the culprits were caught red-footed.

It is believed the kea listened out for the cars in the tunnel and moved the cones between the streams of traffic - possibly in an attempt to make the cars slow down or feed them.

Heavier road cones were considered an option - but instead the gym has been established at the entrance to the tunnel.

It is already being utilised by several birds.