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Facts for Mother's Day

Embargoed until 10:45am – 7 May 2008

Facts for Mother's Day

To acknowledge all mothers' hard work and caring, Statistics New Zealand is marking Mother's Day on Sunday 11 May with some facts about mothers.

• Most women living in New Zealand become mothers. The 2006 Census showed that 86 percent of women aged in their forties had at least one child. Among these mothers, 15 percent had one child, 42 percent had two children, 26 percent had three children, and 17 percent had four or more children.

• In 2007 there were 64,040 live births. The highest number of births ever recorded in New Zealand was 65,390 in 1961.

• The median age of all women giving birth in 2007 was 30 years, compared with 25 years in 1977.

• More than one in five mothers (22 percent) who gave birth in 2007 were aged 35 years or older.

• On Mother's Day in 2007, 144 babies were born to 142 mothers.

• There were 32,790 first-time mothers in 2007, representing 52 percent of all live births.

• The median age of first-time mothers in 2007 was 28 years.

• A total of 1,950 children were multiple births in 2007, compared with 1,051 in 1977. Twins were born to 525 first-time mothers, and another five new mothers had triplets.

• 181 mothers of multiple births already had at least two children.

• Mothers of multiples tended to be older. While half of mothers who had single births were aged 30 or over (50 percent), for multiples this rose to almost two-thirds (63 percent).

Geoff Bascand

Government Statistician

7 May 2008


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