John Weekes is a reporter for the Herald on Sunday.
Conservationists are puzzled at a freaky phenomenon blamed on this winter's monster storms.
A bird rescue centre is caring for six giant petrels after concerned members of the public found the birds in distress.
New Zealand Bird Rescue's Lyn MacDonald said in 27 years working at the shelter, she'd never had more than one giant petrel at a time. In fact, she rarely saw more than one a year. Each of the six birds now at the shelter arrived separately over the past few weeks.
The latest, found near Muriwai, arrived yesterday.
MacDonald believed the most rational explanation lay with wild storms of the last few weeks causing the birds to be blown off course. Yet there were plenty of similar storms over the last quarter-century, and no subsequent increase in wounded petrel sightings.
Initial blood tests indicated some of the birds suffered from internal bleeding.