A gay couple in Australia have said they are "gobsmacked" at the response to an ad they posted in a New Zealand newspaper asking for Maori woman who would be willing to become an egg donor so their "dreams of a family can come true".

Nelson and Baden Marino-Hall described their shock after more than 40 women came forward to respond to their ad in The Dominion Post.

While Nelson is born in Australian, Baden is of Maori descent and grew up in Otaki, on the Kapiti Coast, north of the capital Wellington. The couple wanted to honour Baden's Mauri links by having a surrogate mother with the same lineage.

Since the ad was published, the pair have been inundated with potential surrogates, with others also coming forward to offer their advice and support.

"We've had more than 40 Maori women reach out to us, it's gobsmacking," Nelson Marino-Hall told the Dominion Post

"There was lots of happy, happy tears last night, going through all the emails, the messages ... it's been an amazing, amazing 24 hours.

"We want to respond to every single woman who reached out to us out of respect - they deserve it ... we want to consider every single option as well, what is the easiest and best thing for those involved," Nelson said.

The couple, who got married last year, said they are now looking at all the potential donors to determine the best match and hope to respond to each applicant out of respect.

Nelson said the most important factor was that the woman or women involved had the "right intention". The couple said they hope to have a second child with whoever they choose as their surrogate in the future.

"There's all these sort of little hurdles that we need to consider, but we're both excited about it and hoping for the best and hopefully we'll have a great news story in the future," he added.

While most of the woman have come forward from New Zealand, others have from Australian cities such as Brisbane and Perth have also expressed an interest.