More evidence on the apparent wanton decimation of NZ’s bird population by the deadly class 1A ecotoxin 1080, banned in most countries, with no antidote, dispensed by helicopters into the bush like a ‘veritable lollie scramble’ as I recently read it described by a person who for a long time worked with both 1080 poison & with DoC.
The late Bill Benfield* in his book, The Third Wave, Poisoning the Land, describes dead birds that were picked up by searchers in 2002 at the Waianakarua Scenic Reserve in North Otago (a 4043 hectare block). (p 71)
Each bird had been grid referenced on a map and at a pest management strategy meeting in Christchurch (May 2009) a Landcare scientist was able to estimate the likely death toll… an astonishing 10,000 birds. Benfield describes the potential possum population in the reserve as being around 7-8,000 in which case he concludes, the pest management people (DoC & AHB) are poisoning more birds than there are possums.
We know of course that 1080 can’t target just non-native birds. So the photos supplied by people of post-drop death counts invariably include examples of both.
NOTE: the header image is not of the birds in question, these are from Paws 4 a Cause’s Facebook page, collected after another 1080 drop. There are many photos of dead birds collected by people directly after the drops. Regarding this article, there is an actual image supplied by Bill Benfield in his book (p71) however I do not at this stage have permission to use it. Please don’t bother asking for proof these ones died of 1080 poisoning. It is not rocket science as to why a collection such as these died when they were collected directly after a 1080 drop. And besides, the Landcare scientist and the folk at the said pest management strategy meeting in Christchurch, all took it as given that the estimated 10,000 birds died of 1080 POISONING, not other causes. No mention of any other possibilities for death with neither any mention of testing the said birds. Now that these items of information are coming to the fore thanks to investigative writers like Benfield, and to the dedication of the many thousands who recently & historically protested, the said authorities are racing hither and yon suddenly getting the birds tested to ‘prove’ that the folk who simply want clean water & food are getting unnecessarily hysterical.
However, remember the 89 dead kiwi that DoC didn’t bother to test for possible 1080 poisoning? I rest my case. Clearly the authorities can no longer rest on their laurels and assume that the trusting NZ public are asleep like they used to be.
* About the late William (Bill) Benfield:
“This is a book about how the destruction of one of the world’s most unique, ancient and unspoiled wilderness areas has led to the growth of an international industry eradicating animals and plants which have been deemed to be “invasive”. That is because they are where pseudo-scientists say they should not be. What New Zealand began as an industrialised extermination has now become island eradications in many parts of the world. To expand and grow, it must either seek more islands, or widen its scope to cover whole nations; that is what it is now doing.
The parasitic riders who drive this conservation gravy train are:-
•Government conservation agencies who seek to increase their bureaucratic power and influence,
•The agri-chemical industry who supply the chemicals and poisons.
•The powerful and wealthy conservation charities who whip up the concept of “threats to nature” as a way generating donations, bequests and corporate sponsorships.
•The academic and science institutions who see in it a rich seam of grant money for supplying junk science in support of the eradication industry.
Eradications are carried out on a scale reminiscent of the US military aerial deforestation of Vietnam with “agent orange”. Here, for all wildlife, the animals, birds and insects, the poisons used are super-toxins such as brodifacoum and 1080. For vegetation, they have devised new wonder chemical cocktails such as “Armageddon”. It is total ecosystem genocide.
To whip up a public fervour to help justify such mass environmental poisoning, the people are fed the concepts of invasive pests and threats. Thus, harmless creatures are demonised and need be shown no mercy. By deliberate and devious propaganda, the public are kept unaware, that in the blinkered rush of zeal to kill “pests” and “predators”, the eradication industry is killing everything else, even the rare and endangered species such as an entire monitored population of rock wrens from an aerial 1080 poisoning at New Zealand’s Kuhurangi National Park.
It is a war against nature.”