Paradise Valley Springs

Waterbird Wetland


Stroll through our Wetland on walkways that meander across the water in places, allowing spectacular views of New Zealand waterbirds.

The Wetland area is alive with Waterfowl; Grey Teal, Black Scaup, Grey ducks, Paradise Shelducks, Mallard ducks and Black Swans.  Come and meet ‘Disco’ our very friendly Paradise Duck!

Dozens of wild ducks visit our Wetland daily, including several visits by a native Blue duck (Whio).  Check out the Whio Forever website for more information about this highly endangered duck.


Black Scaup  Small black duck and New Zealand’s only true diving duck.  They can swim submerged for up to 20 seconds.  Female has brown coloured eyes, male has yellow eyes.

Grey Duck  Have Brown plumage.  Face and chin light buff colour.  Green colour on wing and yellowish brown feet.  Dark grey/blue bill.

Grey Teal  Small brown flecked duck with red eyes, black legs and bill.  Dabbles (upends) when feeding.

Paradise Shelduck  New Zealand’s largest and most vocal duck.  The female has a white head with rusty brown body, whereas the male has a black head and dark coloured body.  Many of our resident Paradise shelducks have been hand-raised and are nice and friendly.  Four of them have been with us since 1994!

Pukeko  A member of the rail family with subspecies around the world.  One of the few birds to have thrived since the arrival of humans to New Zealand.


Black Swan  Black body with white wing tips.  Long neck, red bill.  Male is larger than the female.  Many are found wild on Rotorua’s lakes.  Introduced from Australia.

Cayuga Duck  Large, green/black colour.  Named after Lake Cayuga in New York State, but exact origin is unclear.

Mallard duck  Male has a glossy green head.  Female is brown with blackish markings - similar to Grey Duck, but with blue/purple colour on wing and orange legs.  Olive-green bill.  Mallard ducks make up most of New Zealand’s dabbling ducks.  Introduced from Europe and America for sport.


For more information about New Zealand's wetland areas, click here to go to the Fish and Game website.

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Paradise Valley Springs