Karearea - The Native Falcon
A land of extremes, of uncompromised beauty; a place of big hearts and stoic determination - Central Otago is home to a bird, small for its nature yet so strong and fearless in its survival. The lower form of our World of Difference logo symbolises not only our unique landscape but also represents the New Zealand native falcon.
This land of difference (Central Otago) provides the Karearea with a home of open, tussock country; their nests simply scratched into steep hillsides, underneath rocks or on rocky ledges. Karearea stay for life. They do not migrate. They are as proud as they are beautiful.
Often feeding on animals larger than itself, the Karearea cannot be underestimated and is uncompromising when protecting its own. Many factors, including predators and human impact, compromise the existence of these beautiful birds. Only a resurgence of awareness and continued education will ensure they are not lost forever in our Central Otago landscape. They remind us of how our actions affect the delicate balance of the natural world around us.
Seeing with your own eyes the flying finesse of a New Zealand falcon courtship is like a magical 'sky dance'. A pretend attack - a chase, a playful yet essential 'tease' of prey from the male, another chase and, finally, he offers her the food near their future nest site.
A call resonates through a crisp clear Central Otago day as the Karearea soars with a sense of freedom in its lonely, vigilant hunt for prey - scanning the golden land, the stark, dark mountains, the valleys, the vineyards, the riverbanks. Shaping itself like an arrow, piercing through trees, hunting by sound, listening and watching with intensity.
In symbolic language, the falcon is associated with noble-natured people, strength, bravery, ingenuity, and high spirits, evoking freedom and pride as it soars above the golden, contoured land. We too can soar here.
Read more about the Central Otago flora in which the Karearea lives.