An environmental group claims kiteboarders have driven dotterels out of their nesting sites at the Ruakaka wildlife sanctuary in Northland.
The Bream Bay Coastal Care Trust wants a ban on kiteboarders in the estuary during tides of 2.7 metres or more, when the birds need to use sandbars as a high roost.
The trust says it filmed flocks of the birds being scared off the sandbars in February. It says there used to be a sizable population of dotterels in the area.
Ruakaka kiteboarders say bikes, horses and walkers also disturb the birds and they are being unfairly singled out.