The Matakana dotterel, a bird specie from New Zealand’s and most endangered , is returning.

The bird, extremely rare now, was seen nesting this summer in the Coromandel, Waihi, Matata, and Ohiwa, in the Bay of Plenty.

The bird’s return was the result of a 17-year-long partnership between DOC and the Matakana Island community to help, protect and build up the bird’s population.

New Zealand dotterel birds were once in great numbers, but loss of habitat, introduction of predators and human presence have reduced their numbers to around 1700.

Human disturbance and introduced pest animals put the dotterel at high risk.

Experts give people this advice:”when walking on the beaches, you can play your part in not disturbing any nests by keeping below the high tide mark, keeping dogs on leashes and ensuring vehicles are not taken onto the beaches.”