Category Archives: Conservation

NZ’s Ruined Rivers are a National Disgrace (CORANZ)

Opinion by Ken Sims,
Life member NZ Federation Freshwater Anglers


The recently published article showing 65 percent of our rivers are “unswimmable” in a country of just 5 million people, should remind government that that the continuing state of New Zealand’s rivers is a national calamity.
It is a disgraceful, shameful reflection on the failure of successive governments to remedy a water crisis that has been worsening over decades. The report stated that the criteria used “looks only at bacteria levels.” Even there, we have one of the highest rates of zoonoses in the developed world. A zoonosis is an infectious disease that has passed from an animal to humans. Such pathogens may be bacterial, viral or parasitic, and can spread to humans through direct contact or through food, water or the environment. They represent a major public health problem around the world due to humans’ close relationship with animals in agriculture, exacerbated by large, concentrated populations. New Zealand’s water crisis goes far deeper. We also have one of the highest rates of sediment runoff, which smothers all life in a waterway. Sediment runoff is accelerated by land uses such as intensive agriculture and forestry clear felling, the latter immediately exposing the bare soil to subsequent rain. 

READ MORE

LINK: https://coranz.org.nz/ruined-rivers-a-national-disgrace/

RELATED: Why You Shouldn’t Swim in the Manawatu, or any NZ River … the Pollution of our Waterways for Corporate Profit

Meet the next ‘Moa’ … Why is the NZ Green Party not condemning the extinction threat to the critically endangered Teviot Flathead?

By Craig Hutchinson

Earlier this week I looked on the NZ Green Party’s website for a statement on the Labour-led government’s Lake Onslow ‘pumped hydro’ project. I couldn’t find one. So I asked the retiring Green Party Energy and Resources Spokesperson, Gareth Hughes. I included a link to my earlier post:

https://www.minds.com/waimak_one/blog/nz-labour-s-mad-energy-idea-1136410724734169088

I think I have offended him. His response:

I would like to decline the opportunity thank you. When your first line is “First we have a fake-left Prime Minister with a fake Covid19 narrative. Now her fake Labour Party (they’ve just destroyed thousands of workers jobs) is pushing a fake energy policy.” And you quote that thoroughly discredited Michael Moore documentary I don’t feel it would be a worthwhile conversation.

Interesting. I didn’t ask for a conversation. I asked for the Green Party’s position on the Lake Onslow proposal.

READ MORE

https://www.minds.com/waimak_one/blog/meet-the-next-moa-why-is-the-nz-green-party-not-condemning-t-1137641441846779904

Photo credit: minds.com

Government poisoning of World Heritage sites in NZ – an open letter from Dr Jo Pollard to IUCN World Headquarters

Peter Shadie
Director, IUCN World Heritage Programme
IUCN World Headquarters
Rue Mauverney 28
1196 Gland
Switzerland
email: peter.shadie@iucn.org

11 June 2020

Dear Mr Shadie

Re: Government poisoning of World Heritage sites in New Zealand – Open letter

I am writing to bring your attention to the serious issue of the New Zealand Government’s aerial poisoning of a World Heritage site and hope that you will urgently contact the World Heritage Committee so they may act on this matter. The 40,000 ha Wet Jacket area is to be aerially poisoned this month under contract to the government’s Department of Conservation (DoC). This poisoning is not justified as the appropriate scientific or technical measure necessary for the conservation of this site, and would breach New Zealand’s obligations under the World Heritage Convention.

The contractor’s application to DoC (attached) to poison the Wet Jacket area describes a hotspot of biodiversity, home to at least 17 species of endangered birds as well as 25 other species of birds. Six species of lizard have been recorded including the rare Fiordland skink. The invertebrate fauna is described as “not fully explored” and “distinctive and important” (Contract Wild Animal Control, 2019).

The 1080 poison to be used is broad spectrum, affecting organisms that breathe oxygen (ERMA, 2007). It is added to cereal food baits and distributed from hoppers carried beneath helicopters. The distribution process creates fragments (Morgan et al. 2015) and dust (Wright et al., 2002). Native lizards, birds and invertebrates are all known to feed on the cereal bait (ERMA 2007). The poison is highly toxic, readily contaminates despite stringent precautions, travels rapidly in water and up food chains, causes reproductive defects across a vast range of species and has highly variable effects which remain poorly understood, with studies being sparse and of poor quality (ERMA, 2007).

Due to poor monitoring, effects of 1080 poisoning on populations of most NZ native animals are unknown (ERMA, 2007; Whiting-O’Keefe & Whiting-O’Keefe, 2007). Only six species of birds were reported as reliably monitored through 1080 drops. Of those, fernbirds suffered most with an estimated 9% loss of the local population per poisoning (Fairweather et al., 2015). Kea have also been intensively monitored, with the finding that on average 12% of birds are killed per operation (DoC, 2016).

The Application to poison the Wet Jacket area shows significant shortcomings, as follow.

Benefits

The reason given for poisoning the Wet Jacket area is to “protect the health and integrity of the flora and fauna susceptible to predation by rats, stoats and possums.” It lists animal species it considers particularly in need of protection: bats, kiwi, parakeets, kea and fiordland crested penguins.

These claims of susceptibility are not referenced or supported by scientific observations. In fact, it was concluded twice that predation was not a problem to kea (Jackson, 1969; Elliot & Kemp, 1999). Short-tailed bats were considered relatively safe from predators, being fast and agile, fiercely mobbing intruders and choosing winter roosts that were inaccessible (Lloyd et al., 2005). “Evidence” of predation of long tailed bats was just an observed association between low bat survival and high rat numbers (Pryde et al 2005; O’Donnell et al., 2011). Doc has attributed failures of some of its invasively monitored bird nests to predators, however they are not representative of undisturbed nests (Ellenberg et al., 2015).

Costs

Known costs left out of the Application include negative ecological effects from aerial poisoning. In many cases, rat numbers rebound to vast new heights within months (Innes et al., 1995; 2010; Powlesland et al., 1999; Ruscoe et al. 2008; Sweetapple et al., 2006). This effect can decimate prey such as invertebrates (Sweetapple & Nugent, 2007). Re-poisoning of rats is likely to become less and less effective due to the rats learning and developing physical tolerance (Byrom et al., 2013; Mitel, 2016; Pollard, 2016). Thus the Eglinton Valley (also in World Heritage site Fiordland National Park) has just received its fourth aerial poisoning in five years (2014, 2016, 2019, 2020). Despite increasing the intensity of the poisoning for rats in September 2019 (DoC, 2019a) another poisoning was carried out this May.

Mouse numbers usually increase soon after aerial poisoning (Innes et al., 1995; Sweetapple & Nugent, 2007, Ruscoe et al., 2008). The increases in rodents during the months after poisoning create ideal conditions to for stoats to flourish (Byrom et al., 2013). In addition, stoats that survived aerial poisoning were found to switch from eating rats to eating native birds (Murphy et al., 1988).

The Application contains no discussion of the conservation importance of the loss of kea, with previous studies indicating a 12% loss of local birds is expected. DoC claims that kea in remote areas are unlikely to get poisoned, however 9% of marked birds were killed by 1080 in an area chosen by DoC to represent remoteness (Kemp et al., 2016 unpublished). The total number of wild kea left is unknown and possibly less than 1000 ((Bond & Diamond, 1992; Harper, 2012; Roy, 2016).

Issues not addressed

Important issues left out of the Application include how much bait will enter the marine area; what effects there will be of baits, fragments and dust in the littoral zone (e.g. on penguins) and in the productive areas of shallow, still water; what will the effects be of the predicted “zero grazing ungulates” (being the last large grazing animals left); what are the chances of cold weather killing off rats in winter if they are left unpoisoned; should a highly diverse, unexplored ecological community be poisoned to try to make it better; what will be done if pest animal numbers are low, without poisoning.

DoC has a strong track record in misleading, pro-poisoning behaviour. It intrudes on nesting birds, attaches equipment to them and their nests, blames predators for nesting failures, then uses the poor nesting results to justify predator control (e.g. for kea (Kemp et al., 2014, unpublished), mohua (Elliott 1996), kiwi (Waterworth, 2019) and kaka (Moorhouse et al., 2003)). It quotes increased “nesting success” as an indication of a bird population’s positive response to poisoning, but nesting success is likely to increase if a population is culled (Nilsson 1984; Arcese & Smith 1988). “Five minute bird counts” are used by DoC to assess bird numbers. This method is notoriously unreliable (Westbrooke & Powlesland 2005; ERMA 2007; Green & Pryde 2012; Hartley 2012), due to major problems such as bird calls increasing after poisoning as birds try to find their dead partners and family, or search for new company.

DoC’s pro-poisoning bias and lack of scientific honesty are also apparent in its publications. For example a stoat plague that followed DoC’s aerial poisoning at Okarito (Kemp et al., 2015, unpublished) was truncated from the published graph (Kemp et al., 2017), despite this being an important outcome. In another example, in a study on bats after a 1080 operation, the contents of one bat roost tree had spilled onto open ground. Inspection revealed a baby bat with placenta attached, which tested positive for 1080. Other roosts in the study were inspected for dead and dying bats by roost camera “where practical” (Edmonds & Pryde, 2015). The published paper has a re-worded section of the original report that now insinuates all roosts were searched equally for dead babies (Edmonds et al., 2017).

The claim that some Eglinton Valley birds are prospering due to DoC’s 1080 poisoning (Minister of Conservation’s media release 11/4/20) is impossible to make: poison in bait stations and trapping are used to try to control mammals in the Eglinton Valley and any separate effects of 1080 cannot be assessed. Mohua (including some from the Wet Jacket area) were restocked there in 2010, 2015 and 2017.

Due to low rodent densities the Wet Jacket area poisoning was postponed in October 2019 (DoC, 2019c). The poisoning has since been promoted in the media as being needed to kill stoats, on the unscientific basis that local, heavily monitored kiwi chicks haven’t been surviving (Waterworth, 2020). These locally monitored kiwi weren’t even mentioned in the Application. There may be a very low stoat kill rate if there is a lack of poisoned rats for them to eat. If the poisoning proceeds regardless of low pest numbers, this will not be unusual. Makarora was poisoned in 2017 for rats despite low numbers (data accessed 22/3/17 via Official Information Act request); poisoning of Arthurs Pass in 2019 went ahead with no rats (data accessed 8/10/19) (mice were present but 1080 pellets are not usually eaten by mice (Fisher & Airey, 2009).

A fraction of the resources being used to poison the Wet Jacket area could support careful, scientific studies of the biodiversity and ecology of the area before a management plan is decided upon. Where populations of rare organisms are considered in immediate danger, localised, benign management can be applied, such as tree banding and caging, and protecting nesting kiwi and kea from DoC staff.

I trust you will act to prevent the unfounded wholesale poisoning of this precious site.

Yours sincerely

Dr Joanna Pollard (BSc (Hons), PhD)

See the IUCN reply to Dr Pollard below references.

References

Arcese, P., Smith, J.M., 1988. Effects of population density and supplemental food on reproduction in song sparrows. Journal of Animal Ecology 57: 119-136.

Bond, A., Diamond, J., 1992. Population estimates of Kea in Arthur’s Pass National Park. Notornis 39: 151-160.

Byrom, A., Banks, P., Dickman, C. & Pech, R., 2013. Will reinvasion stymie large-scale eradication of invasive mammals in New Zealand? Kararehe Kino 21: 6-7.

Contract Wild Animal Control, 2019b. Completed DoC Application form for predator control in the Wet Jacket Area. 34 pp.

DoC, 2016. Aerial 1080 in kea habitat. Code of Practice. NZ Department of Conservation Unclassified document. 24 pp.

DoC, 2019a. Application for DoC permission to use vertebrate VTAs assessment report: Clinton and Eglinton catchments. 11 pp.

DoC, 2019b. https://www.doc.govt.nz/our-work/monitoring-reporting/national-status-and-trend-reports-2018-2019/?report=TaxaUnderManagement_Ltbats

DoC, 2019c. Revocation permission ID DoC 5909386.

Edmonds, H., Pryde, M., 2015. Eglinton Valley lesser short-tailed bat monitoring programme 2014/2015. DOCDM 1568082 15 pp.

Edmonds, H., Pryde, M., O’Donnell, C., 2017. Survival of PIT-tagged lesser short-tailed bats (Mystacina tuberculata) through an aerial 1080 pest control. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 17: 186-192.

Ellenberg, U., Edwards, E., Mattern, T., Hiscock, J.A., Wilson, R. & Edmonds, H., 2015. Assessing the impact of nest searches on breeding birds – a case study on Fiordland crested penguins (Eudyptes pachyrhynchus). New Zealand Journal of Ecology 39: 231-244.

Elliott, G.,  Kemp, J., 1999. Conservation ecology of kea (Nestor notabilis). WWF-NZ Final Report 1 August 1999, 64 pp.

ERMA Review, 2007. Environmental Risk Management Authority’s reassessment of 1080, 2007, Application HRE05002.

Fairweather, A, Broome, K., Fisher, P., 2015. Sodium fluoroacetate pesticide information review. Department of Conservation Report Docdm-25427. 103 pp.

Fisher, P., Airey, A.T., 2009. Factors affecting 1080 pellet bait acceptance by house mice (Mus musculus). Department of Conservation DOC Research & Development Series Feb-Mar 305-308

Greene, T.C., Pryde, M.A., 2012. Three population estimation methods compared for a known South Island robin population in Fiordland, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 36: 340-252.

Guthrie, 2017.  https://predatorfreenz.org/long-term-study-reveals-bat-response-predator-control/

Harper, P., 2012. DOC shocked five Kea shot dead. Nestor Notabilis 6: 24.

Hartley, LJ 2012. Five-minute bird counts in New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 36: 268-278.

Innes, J., Kelly, D., Overton, J., Gilles, C. 2010. Predation and other factors currently limiting New Zealand forest birds. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 34: 86-114.

Innes, J., Warburton, B., Williams, D., Speed, H., Bradfield, P. 1995. Large-scale poisoning of ship rats (Rattus rattus) in indigenous forests of the North Island, New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 19: 5-17.

Jackson, J.R., 1969. What do keas die of? Notornis 16: 33-44.

Kemp, J., Orr-Walker, T., Elliott, G., Adams, N., Fraser, J., Roberts, L., Mosen, C., Amey, J., Barrett, B., Makan, T., 2014, unpublished.  Benefits to kea (Nestor notabilis) populations from invasive mammal control via aerial 1080 baiting. Department of Conservation. 29 pp.

Kemp, J., Cunninghame, F., Barrett, B., Makan, T., Fraser, J., Mosen, C., 2015, unpublished. Effect of an aerial 1080 operation on the productivity of the kea (Nestor notabilis) in a West Coast rimu forest. Department of Conservation report. 15 pp.

Kemp, J., Hunter, C., Mosen, C., Elliott, G., 2016, unpublished. Draft: Kea population responses to aerial 1080 treatment in South Island landscapes. Department of Conservation, 14 pp.

Kemp, J., Mosen, C., Elliott, G., Hunter, C., 2018. Effects of the aerial application of 1080 to control pest mammals on kea reproductive success, New Zealand Journal of Ecology 42: 158-168.

King, 1984. Immigrant Killers. Introduced Predators and the conservation of birds in New Zealand. Oxford University Press.

Mitel, S., 2016. https://timnovate.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/the-mice-and-rats-are-winning/

Moorhouse, R., Greene, T., Dilks, P., Powlesland, R., Moran, L., Taylor, G., Jones, A., Knegtmans, J., Wills, D., Pryde, M., Fraser, I., August, A., August, C. 2003: Control of introduced mammalian predators improves kaka Nestor meridionalis breeding success: reversing the decline of a threatened New Zealand parrot. Biological Conservation 110: 33–44.

Morgan, D., Hickling, G. 2000. Techniques Used for Poisoning Possums, in TL Montague (ed. The brushtail possum: biology, impact and management, Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln, pp. 143-153.

Murphy, E., Clapperton, B., Bradfield, P., Speed, H. 1998. Effects of rat-poisoning on abundance and diet of mustelids in New Zealand podocarp forests. NZ J Zoology 25: 315-328.

Nilsson, S.G., 1984. The evolution of nest-site selection among hole-nesting birds: The importance of nest predation and competition. Ornis Scandinavica 15: 167-175.

Pollard. J.C., 2016. Aerial 1080 poisoning in New Zealand: Reasons for concern.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/308712508_Aerial_1080_poisoning_in_New_Zealand_Reasons_for_concern 17 pp.

Powlesland, R., Knegtmans, J., Marshall, I. 1999. Costs and benefits of aerial 1080 possum control operations using carrot baits to North Island Robins (Petroica australis longipes), Pureora Forest Park. NZ J Ecology 23: 149-159.

Roy, E.A., 2016. New Zealand kea, the world’s only alpine parrot, faces extinction

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/sep/21/new-zealand-kea-the-worlds-only-alpine-parrot-faces-extinction

Ruscoe, W., Sweetapple, P., Yockney, I., Pech, R., Barron, M., Cave, S., Ramsey, D. 2008. Interactions of mammalian pest populations following control. Kararehe Kino Vertebrate Pest Research 13: 4-6.

Sweetapple, P., Nugent, G., Poutu, N., Horton, P. 2006. Effect of reduced possum density on rodent and stoat abundance in podocarp-hardwood forests. Science for Conservation 231. 25 pp.

Sweetapple, P & Nugent, G 2007 Secondary Effects of Possum Control. Kararehe Kino 11: 9-10.

Waterworth, K., 2019. https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/southland/stoat-chick-toll-erasing-tokoeka

Waterworth, K., 2020. https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/fiordland/poison-drop-stop-predation-kiwi

Westbrooke, I.M., Powlesland, R.G., 2005. Comparison of impact between carrot and cereal 1080 baits on tomtits (Petroica macrocephala). New Zealand Journal of Ecology 29: 143-147.

Whiting O’Keefe, P., Whiting-O’Keefe, Q., Aerial monofluoroactate in New Zealand’s forests. An appraisal of the scientific evidence. 89 pp.

Wright, G., Booth, L., Morriss, G., Potts, M., Brown, L., Eason, C. 2002. Assessing potential environmental contamination from compound 1080 (sodium monofluoroacetate) in bait dust during possum control operations. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Science 45: 57-65.

IUCN’S REPLY TO DR POLLARD:

Recent Posts

SOURCE: https://1080science.co.nz/open-letter-to-iucn-world-headquarters-government-poisoning-of-world-heritage-sites-in-nz/?fbclid=IwAR3XmOuGGnNLql2ZAxmpduWPPE5nETwBukOzfrN96kglEOWUp8OyPEmC6Xk

Header Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay (text added)

The big ‘sustainable’ LIE – NZ Govt quietly grants mining exploration permit inside Māui dolphin sanctuary

Seen anything sustainable happening since Rogernomics? Since the inception of the Agenda 21 plans? All that seems to be happening really is more rape & pillage with the blessing of the respective governments which really aren’t too different (in case you hadn’t noticed) … same bird different wings, offering you the illusion of choice. The Agenda 21 buzz word ‘sustainable’ is a bit of a joke really … three decades on and all we have to show for the outworking of that scheme by the various authorities (namely district & regional councils) is more pollution, more debt, more ‘austerity measures’ (for some… guess who) more poverty, more suicide, more homelessness and little of anything worth celebrating at all. They would like us to swallow the line that they are CONSERVING biodiversity … so they approve mining exploration in a dolphin sanctuary?  They also bomb our native & non native species with a Class 1A Ecotoxin under the same guise. I think folk are waking up to the big sustainable lie now. It’s shot full of holes.  EWR


Debbie Ngarewa-Packer, of Ngati Ruanui, says she was shocked to hear of the permit being granted. The iwi is one of 11 organisations appeal Trans Tasman Resources consent to mine off the South Taranaki Coast

From stuff.co.nz

A mining exploration permit has been quietly granted inside a marine sanctuary off the Taranaki coast to protect the endangered Māui’s dolphins.

The decision, which was approved in May, has shocked conservation groups who were unaware of it.

But the Department of Conservation (DOC) had been aware of Ironsands Offshore Mining Ltd’s application since March. It has voiced “significant concerns” about the safety of the dolphins if the exploration proved successful and mining was to go ahead.

In March DOC warned Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage that it was uncertain whether the public was aware of the application and there would be a “high level of interest” if people were told of the development.

READ MORE:
Miners given access to Māui dolphin sanctuary
Company defends iron sand mining decision
Consent reduced Māori interest to ‘lip service’
Controversial plan to mine for iron ore approved
Iwi will appeal iron sand mining off Taranaki coast
Iron sand miner wants to fast-track plans

The exploration permit was later granted without seeking resource consent from the Taranaki Regional Council because its coastal plan rules exploration is a permitted activity.

Ironsands also has a permit to explore the seabed of Waihi Beach, in the Bay of Plenty, but this will require recourse consent from the regional council because its coastal plan requires it.

A Taranaki iwi already fighting mining plans off the coast of Pātea in South Taranaki said the approval raised alarm bells.

In an emailed statement, Te Runanga o Ngati Ruanui Trust kaiarataki Debbie Ngarewa-Packer said granting the five year exploration permit in the sanctuary, which runs from Oakura to Maunganui Bluff in Northland, set a dangerous precedent.

“Taranaki has been instructed by this coalition government to transition our economy away from fossil-fuelled industry. To do that we must have certainty that our unique appeal, including natural resources, will be protected,” she said.

In April, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the end of offshore oil and gas exploration, about one month before Ironsands Offshore Mining’s exploration permit was granted.

The permit covers an area almost four times the size of that granted by the Environmental Protection Authority to Trans Tasman Resources (TTR) for mining of the coast Pātea.

The EPA’s decision was appealed by 11 parties and an appeal hearing was held in the High Court at Wellington in April. Justice Peter Churchman has yet to reveal his decision.

READ MORE

https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/105428150/mining-exploration-permit-inside-marine-mammal-sanctuary-is-slammed?fbclid=IwAR2vWORblQCLSOXpQ6Mpza_hnZJrFhc9447yl1GUXIUqI5aQxy34i_-JmkU

PHOTO CREDIT: stuff.co.nz

NZ’S DEPT OF CONSERVATION APPROVES DESTRUCTION OF RARE CRESTED GREBE HABITAT – TO IMPROVE FOREIGN LANDOWNER’S VIEW

By Carol Sawyer

‘The developers, a couple from Scotland and Malaysia who live in Singapore, reportedly acquired property in Arrowtown in 2015 after an 18-month process through the Overseas Investment Office. The felling of non-native willow trees and installation of the boardwalk is reportedly to improve their views.”

QLDC gave their approval as well.

Iwi , LINZ, ORC and Fish and Game were also consulted as so-called “affected” parties, but no-one else was… what did they agree to?!

You can read the article from The Wanaka Sun at this link:

https://www.thewanakasun.co.nz/news/8862-destruction-of-grebe-ecosystem-dismaying.html?fbclid=IwAR3kXziWrZ5PKbVLKbF1vrimwBR7e8yHROGgHWW4Qt21GZA8S6yfJvt3ngo

safe_image work under way at wanaka threatened grebe.jpg
Works are underway at the southern end of Lake Hayes    Photo:  The Wanaka Sun

This article makes me feel very sad, not just because of the grebes, but because gentle John Darby has devoted so much time over recent years to try and save the crested grebe. He is restrained in his criticism, where I would be wanting to lie under the bulldozers. He has built floating platforms for the birds to nest on around the marina in Lake Wanaka, and has been devoted to these rare creatures.

He was Assistant Director and Head of Sciences at Otago Museum before he retired to Wanaka. This article will give you some insight:

https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/wanaka/science-his-passion

 

Header Photo: alfredgrupstra1 Pixabay.com

DoC is calling the kettle black don’t you think?

So according to this article from the News Room, Ngāi Tahu have been instrumental in the loss of habitat for the small brown Eyrewell beetle in NZ… and it would appear, DoC almost powerless to stop them? The little beetle, like many insects world wide, is becoming extinct (not that any manufacturers of the lucrative poisons slathered world wide over everything would care).

Whatever you may think about Ngāi Tahu or their part in the demise of this beetle DoC can hardly point fingers at them witness our increasingly silent forests in NZ. They are dropping tonnes of the insecticide 1080 all over our ecosystem like a veritable lolly scramble, with no long term studies to prove to us it is saving our birds as it claims. On top of all that they actually claim it targets pests (& does not kill non target creatures) when clearly by their own documented information & independent science, 1080 kills every living breathing organism period. The little beetle here also began its demise with the ongoing planting & felling of pine forests. So really it’s a bit rich all round to be pointing the finger at Ngāi Tahu. Aside from that, turn the clock back a century and a bit & you’ll find the ongoing cry was that Māori lands that were uncultivated or not farmed were ‘waste’ lands, a good reason why Māori shouldn’t own them. Damned if they do, damned if they don’t.

RELATED LINKS:
THE DECIMATION OF OUR NATIVE KEA – WE ARE WATCHING ONE OF NEW ZEALAND’S GREATEST ENVIRONMENTAL TRAGEDIES TAKING PLACE!

“TWENTY YEARS OF 1080 IN THE HAAST VALLEY HAS KILLED OUR KEA POPULATION”

THE 1080 INSECTICIDE IS NOT KILLING 50% OF OUR INSECTS SAYS DOC – AND NO LONG TERM MONITORING IN SIGHT


From thenewsroom.co.nz

Search for Eyrewell Forest on Google Maps and you won’t find a forest. In fact, what you see looks similar to surrounding Canterbury farm land.

What was once a forest is now home to 14,000 dairy cows. Satellite photographs show a tell-tale pattern of circles where centre-pivot irrigators are busy creating grass where trees once stood.

The forest was home to a small, dark brown beetle commonly known as the Eyrewell ground beetle. Globally, only 10 have ever been found. All were found amongst trees in Eyrewell Forest, the last in 2005.

The beetles’ home was returned to Ngāi Tahu as part of a treaty settlement in 2000. Since then the 6700 hectares of plantation pines have steadily disappeared and dairy cows have taken over.

“The success and effectiveness of Ngāi Tahu Farming is connected to the health and wellbeing of the lands, waterways, plants and animals under our care which is central to our kaitiakitanga values.”

The march of chainsaws, shredders and pivot irrigators continued despite eight years of effort by the Department of Conservation (DOC) to convince Ngāi Tahu Farming to save some the beetles’ habitat in reserves.

In October 2018 Ngāi Tahu Farming told Stuff  the last of the forest would be removed for the intensive dairy conversion. Its CEO Andrew Priest said the organisation turns to Ngāi Tahu values guide their farming.

“The success and effectiveness of Ngāi Tahu Farming is connected to the health and wellbeing of the lands, waterways, plants and animals under our care which is central to our kaitiakitanga values.”

According to him 120 hectares of plantation pine has been retained. From aerial photographs it appears this has been done only in one area where beetles were possibly found. Other areas where beetles were found are treeless, one area has a small amount of scrub.

Priest said Lincoln University has been surveying the likely remaining spots of the beetle since 2013. No beetles have been found. He said search efforts will be abandoned in 2020.

The risk of extinction is so extreme one scientist, Eckehard Brockerhoff, who found five of the 10 collected beetles, is considered penning an obituary.

If he does, the obituary will be scant on detail of the beetle as so little is known about it. It’s a bit over 1cm long, nocturnal, and scientists think it lives for two years.

Wingless and described as a “moderate” runner it has managed to move from the kānuka it inhabited in the 1920s to the plantation pine which replaced it. It could even be called tenacious, as it also survived repeated rounds of removing and replacing areas of plantation pine as areas of forest were progressively logged and replanted.

Whether its tenacity could survive the dairy conversion is another matter according to Brockerhoff who spent thousands of trapping days attempting to find the beetle in the early 2000s. His efforts netted five beetles.

“It [the dairy conversion] involves felling all the trees, ripping out the root stock and then pretty much mulching the coarser woody material which is left behind into small chips. They took like a giant shredder over it. It was a very effective method of not only shredding any plant matter, but any invertebrates that are larger than a pinhead. I didn’t think the beetles would have stood much of a chance to survive in those converted areas.”

In the views of the scientists, setting aside a reserve of plantation pine where beetles were found in the 6700 ha property could have given the beetle a fighting chance.

Eyrewell Forest. Red dots show approximate locations where Eyrewell beetles were found by Brockerhoff. Yellow dots are probable locations of previously found beetles. Image: Google Maps

Failed talks

Brockerhoff sums up Ngāi Tahu Farming’s reception to the idea of establishing a reserve to save the beetles habitat as “a bit reluctant.”

Documents attained under the Official Information Act show repeated efforts were made by DOC between 2005 and 2013 to promote the creation of a reserve.

Emails exchanges started off cheerfully. A 2009 email from DOC to Ngāi Tahu’s rural manager reads: “Just been chatting to [redacted name] here at DOC re the possibility of setting up a reserve at Eyrewell – the same chat we had about two years ago I’m sure you recall!!!”

Once trees started to be cut down and with no formal agreement about the creation of a reserve the tone grew more urgent. In internal DOC emails frustration is clear.

“It’s fine for private landowners to develop their land, however it seems absurd for us a community to be allowing the unplanned clearance of much of the forest when this will knowingly cause the extinction of Holcaspis [Eyrewell ground beetle] …”

A plan by Ngāi Tahu Farming to reserve 150ha of pine forest was called “commendable”, however, the location of the reserve was not in the area where the beetle had been found. Restoration planting Ngāi Tahu Farming was planning to undertake was also not considered to be a solution which would save the beetle.

“… preserving a small amount of their habitat before it is gone will give us a great chance of saving these species from global extinction and regional extinction respectively, and one that is far more effective than some-how recreating their habitat … some minor changes to the location and size of the reserves would effectively save these species from extinction.”

DOC staff listed their attempts at finding a way to save the beetles’ habitat through the district and regional council pathways. A judicial review was suggested, although it was noted this was with some nervousness as there would be several “legal fish hooks”.

There was no judicial review. After 2013, the emails stopped.

DOC Mahaanui operations manager Andy Thompson said he understood Ngāi Tahu Farming commissioned Lincoln University to help with restoration efforts after 2013. Thompson was not aware of what the outcome has been and whether DOC’s eight years campaigning for a reserve had any effect.

“DOC would have loved to have seen a reserve created and an Eyrewell ground beetle population flourishing. The reality is we can only provide advice for managing biodiversity values on private land or advocate through consent processes and district council plans.

“We don’t have the ability to directly manage private land.”

“The fact that most of the forest has gone and now no beetles are being found means they’ve likely already been driven extinct, and a couple more years of trapping will probably confirm that.”

Ngāi Tahu Farming’s response

Priest said the plight of the beetle was an issue of importance to Ngāi Tahu Farming.

“Since 2013, Lincoln University has been surveying the Eyrewell Forest area at the request of Ngāi Tahu and has found no beetles. They have surveyed in the likely remaining sites using the same techniques as the original survey and have not found any beetles after searching for approximately 30,000 trap days. These annual surveys will continue until 2020 at this stage.

“In this area, approximately 120ha of pine forest has been retained and at least another 100ha of land has been set aside for native kānuka shrub land restoration. The pine forest in the central section of the development has not been cleared away, which is important to note because it is in this area that Canterbury Beetles [Eyrewell beetles] were once recorded.”

Ngāi Tahu Farming have been asked to clarify where these areas are on an aerial map but did not respond prior to publishing.

Wikipedian-at-large and keen entomologist Doctor Mike Dickison has expressed concern over the plight of the beetles for several months. He was not impressed by Ngāi Tahu Farming’s efforts.

“The preferred habitat of the beetle is pine forest, and they’ve removed 98.3% of the pine forest, chipped and mulched what’s left, and turned it into dairy pasture.”

With only one of the areas the beetle has been found in left as forest he suspects it will never be seen again.

“The fact that most of the forest has gone and now no beetles are being found means they’ve likely already been driven extinct, and a couple more years of trapping will probably confirm that.”

Mike Dickison visited Eyrewell Forest February 9. Photo: Mike Dickison

He’s not reassured by the claims of restoration efforts. During a recent visit to the area he saw planting in the corners of centre-pivot irrigated paddocks with dead plants.

A Lincoln University website show what it calls a “distributed forest” as being proposed for the farm. Concept drawings show thin rings of native trees surrounding centre-pivot irrigators.

Brockerhoff said when he was in talks with Ngāi Tahu Farming it hoped shelter belts which were going to be established between irrigated paddocks would provide enough habitat for the beetles.

“We suggested a single row of trees in the landscape established after the habitat conversion would probably not do the trick.”

He was unsurprised at the news no beetles have been found since he found the last one in 2005.

“I think the surveys done from 2013 onwards was after the pine forest had been cleared.”

He said while guesswork was involved, it’s probable no beetles have been found because the forests gone: “The shredding and the mulching would not have left a lot of invertebrates behind.”

While 120ha might sound like a large area it’s still a limited habitat according to Brockerhoff.

“Even if there is a population there, there’s no guarantee they can actually survive there.”

“The decision to convert Eyrewell Forest to pasture has been driven by an economic assessment of profitability, with little consideration of biodiversity values.”

Why can’t we save a beetle?

Insects on private land don’t have much protection. The only exception is if they are listed as protected under the Wildlife Act. Despite being on a DOC list of 150 conservation priority species, the Eyrewell ground beetle is not on the list of protected insects.

draft policy for indigenous biodiversity has been written which could cover insects in the future, however, there’s disagreement about plantation forests. The Forest Owners’ Association and Federated Farmers want a special exclusion stopping any plantation forest from being classed as being worthy of protection, regardless of what threatened species might live there.

While most don’t think of commercial pine forests as hotbeds of biodiversity they’ve become home to a surprising number of New Zealand’s threatened species. A 2010 article published in the New Zealand Journal of Ecology found 118 species listed as threated live in plantation forests. These include birds such as kiwi and falcons, bats, fish, plants, and invertebrates like the Eyrewell ground beetle.

The article makes special mention of the Eyrewell forest:

“However, this forest, along with several others in this area, is currently being converted to pasture, primarily for dairying. The decision to convert Eyrewell Forest to pasture has been driven by an economic assessment of profitability, with little consideration of biodiversity values. If the conversion is implemented without setting aside adequate areas of suitable habitat for H. brevicula [Eyrewell beetle] (i.e. plantation forest or restored kānuka forest) then this species is likely to become extinct in the near future.”

Brockerhoff’s most optimistic view of the likelihood the beetles’ tenacity might help it survive the dairy conversion is far from inspiring.

“The chances aren’t too good but it’s difficult to say.”

https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2019/02/12/440614/hello-cows-bye-bye-rare-beetle?preview=1&fbclid=IwAR0dLISjIFB1tTMSvB46RPzTEWOYLuMSmwiC7q_o4GWOkFMCh5jhMPZ04hs

Some insights on DoC from insiders

Some insights on DoC here from insiders … note that familiar word ‘restructure’ the the smoke & mirror modus operandi of the corporates. When the music stops (the restructure music) … less bums on seats, more work for those who are left, more profits for CE & the likes. A post Rogernomics tactic.

Insiders pan DOC’s corporate embrace

From newsroom.co.nz

Another sign of how the Department of Conservation has lost its way, some insiders and ex-staffers say, is its embrace of corporate management methods. David Williams reports.

Faced with staff discontent, the Department of Conservation called in consultants and rolled out a suite of management tools. First there was the so-called interface project, to improve relations between scientific and operational staff. After that, there was “team process” and “reflection logs”, and, for managers, “single-point accountability”.

DOC director-general Lou Sanson, a proponent of the changes, says when he was appointed in 2013 the department was “siloed”, after two big restructures that shed 250 jobs. The new wave of staff interactions have led to huge advances, he says.

But critics say the new set of behavioural rules are another sign DOC has lost its way – showing how disconnected the leadership of the organisation’s become from the work it’s there to do. One former DOC worker says the department’s been captured by fads, which has ushered in a period of “empty change”. They paint a picture of excruciatingly awkward, hours-long meetings of unnecessary navel-gazing.

Another former DOC staffer says: “A tremendous amount of money, time and effort was being spent on what I would regard as wasted projects trying to make communication internally within the department better.”

‘Just doing his job’

A current DOC insider says the changes accentuated the decision-making authority of managers, who were encouraged to manage workers more assertively. That’s made them more sensitive to people who – like departed ecologist Nick Head – challenge authority about poor decisions.

Head was controversially suspended for sending photos to conservation organisations, after being asked to do so, of irrigation pipeline work on public conservation land. But some of his ex-colleagues say he was just doing his job and was effectively punished for speaking up about “piss-poor” decisions.

READ MORE

https://www.newsroom.co.nz/@environment/2018/07/16/155418/insiders-pan-docs-corporate-embrace?fbclid=IwAR1Mcy4HgoohTj3BAl4xf2lCJTOGQ02wB6EIYzRxFG_FQ4nidGNg_Tu5qXM

DoC admits their 1080 rat control operation only lasts 3-6 months … ANNUAL poisoning now for Heaphy Vlly & Coast

From Carol Sawyer
1 Nov 2018

DoC ADMITS RAT CONTROL ONLY WORKS FOR 3 – 6 MONTHS !!
HEAPHY VALLEY AND COAST – TO HAVE ANNUAL AERIAL 1080 POISONING

I have been sent this letter with the comment “Look at this Carol, this is the first time I have seen DOC admit that the poison only holds back numbers of rodents for 3-6 months!”

It is indeed the first time they have admitted that! DoC say in their letter :

“The Department estimates that each pest control operation will provide a window for native species to breed and thrive that lasts around three to six months before rat numbers start to build up again.”

Look at the attached graph… only five months after the 1080 drop, the rat numbers had become HIGHER than they were at the time of the drop and were continuing to climb.

The 20,667 ha area extends over the western end of the Heaphy track, and the drop will take place between October and December, 2018.

**************************************************************

“7 September, 2018

Dear……

This letter is to let you know abut changes to pest control work happening in the Heaphy Valley and along the Heaphy Coast in the coming year.

The Department is moving to trial an annual rodent control program starting from this year in this area due to consistently high numbers of rats outside operation times. These high numbers are impacting the bird and bat populations in the area and threatening other vulnerable native species.

The Department estimates that each pest control operation will provide a window for native species to breed and thrive that lasts around three to six months before rat numbers start to build up again.

The pest control will be closely monitored to ensure it is obtaining the outcomes needed to protect species.

Over the coming months, we will be conducting a consultation process with landowners, the local community and other interested parties.

A fact sheet containing further information on the pest control in the Heaphy Valley and coast is attached.The map shows the indicative boundaries of the operation.

DoC will be contracting a local pest control operator to carry out the work and notifications will be sent out closer to the time of the operation.

If you would like to discuss any aspect of what is proposed then please do not hesitate to contact me at the address below by September 30th, 2018.

Kind regards,

Jess Curtis
Senior Ranger – Bathurst Project
Dept of Conservation”


 

41990613_2210023522611295_278666141113516032_n

41985800_2210023705944610_994297118141186048_n

42045509_2210023565944624_1542090789104910336_n

42160640_2210023619277952_7005658904696717312_n

 

“NZ’s Predator Free 2050 program .. not .. well informed by scientific knowledge or conservation best practice” say two conservation academics

NZ’s very controversial Predator Free 2050 program is driven by “international agreements and a global agenda to purge all non native species of animals and plants around the world”.

A paper published by Professor Wayne Linklater and Dr Jamie Steer (July 2018) in Conservation Letters: A Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology  (cited at the Wiley Online Library*) concludes that the Government’s Predator Free 2050 program “has not been well informed by scientific knowledge or conservation best practice. It also misdirects attention” they say “from more fundamental and direct threats to biodiversity protection and recovery”.

Associate Professor Wayne Linklater from Victoria University’s School of Biological Sciences, considered by many to be the “founder of modern pest management in New Zealand” was recently awarded the 2018 Peter Nelson Memorial Trophy by New Zealand’s Biosecurity Institute in recognition of his research in pest management.

Dr Jamie Steer is a  Senior Biodiversity Advisor for Greater Wellington Regional Council. He has a Doctor of Philosophy in Environmental Science from the University of Auckland, a Master of Science in Ecology and Biodiversity, and a Bachelor of Science in Biology. He is a former member of the Ecological Society of New Zealand and a current Associate of the New Zealand Centre for Human-Animal Studies.

I’m sure you will agree that these two academics are well qualified to be commenting on NZ’s Predator Free agenda. DoC have purportedly discussed with them the concerns outlined in their research paper, however DoC is undeterred. Bear in mind they are tasked with selling to the public a global agenda signed up to historically to rid every nation in the world of any and all non native species, plant and animal.

You can read the research paper at the link:

Predator Free 2050: A flawed conservation policy displaces higher priorities and better, evidence‐based alternatives

Abstract

New Zealand’s policy to exterminate five introduced predators by 2050 is well‐meant but warrants critique and comparison against alternatives. The goal is unachievable with current or near‐future technologies and resources. Its effects on ecosystems and 26 other mammalian predators and herbivores will be complex. Some negative outcomes are likely. Predators are not always and everywhere the largest impact on biodiversity. Lower intensity predator suppression, habitat protection and restoration, and prey refugia will sometimes better support threatened biodiversity.

READ THE ENTIRE PAPER AT THE SOURCE:

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/conl.12593


 

*”Conservation Letters is a scientific journal publishing empirical and theoretical research with significant implications for the conservation of biological diversity. The journal welcomes submissions across the biological and social sciences – especially interdisciplinary submissions – that advance pragmatic conservation goals as well as scientific understanding”.  SOURCE

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who is really driving Pest Free NZ (PFNZ) – what you aren’t being told

An excellent article here that throws much needed light on the 1080 poison issue. So here it is in plain sight. Agenda 21, kicked off at the Earth Summit in 1992. If the prevention of biodiversity loss caused by alien species was so above board why are they not selling it to the general public in its original terms? And as I keep repeating, if this UN document were truly about their so called sustainable practices we should by now be seeing some results. Instead we see unprecedented pollution, environmental destruction, poverty, inequality, homelessness & debt. And aside from all of that, what is sustainable about poisoning the entire environment? What is sustainable about poison, period? Oh, that’s right, certain corporate profits.


By J James at infonews.co.nz

What is driving the Pest Free NZ Agenda and the hysteria in eradicating non native species.  Answer – International agreements and a global  agenda to purge all non native species of animals and plants around the world.

Its wise to know that when you stand up to protest DOC for the tortuous deaths it is perpetrating on innocent animals,  that you are confronting not just DOC or the current minister or politician but a host of unelected bureaucrats who manage all the various global agreements NZ has signed up to.  These bureaucrats ensure that things run smoothly. The minister and the politicians are an interface between us and them.  John Key called these global organisations the clubs 

There is much more to this story that you can research yourself but the core thing here is that NZ is part of a much bigger extremist idea under the guise of protecting biodiversity – or purism as I call it –  where everything and anything non native and not productive to  human use will be destroyed.

While you browse through these sites you will read a language that appears benign and even needed, yet the practical application and act of killing so many innocent species unlucky to find themselves in another country is horrendous to contemplate and makes me wonder about the sanity of this human race.

Nature abhors a vacuum and will do anything to balance her eco system and can usually do it – its called adaption its called evolution.  When ‘man’ decides to play god then unintended consequences abound and we are all put at risk.  That we now stand at the edge of this psychopathic agenda of death, we must pause for a moment and consider how industry with the approval of governments have deforested the planet to feed its voracious appetite for money for economic growth at all costs .  There has been a huge cost – industry enabled by  governments have destroyed so much of the world’s natural habitat that species extinction has become so obvious.  The shock of this has forced the agenda of biodiversity loss using eradication of non native species as a means to address it.

Here in NZ it is seen most noticeably in the dropping of poison out of helicopters into pristine ecosystems, rendering them silent.
When New Zealand announced its Predator Free NZ vision it wasn’t as if suddenly someone in the Department of Conservation woke up with a great idea – it was a directive NZ had to follow as part of being a member of the United Nations.  They never mention this.

There is a global agenda to rid every nation in the world of any and all non native species – animals and plants – non productive species that is – cows and sheep bulls and horses and domestic pigs will stay because they are part of industry and form the back bone of many economies.  But the rest that are not needed will be eradicated.

This is the global agenda and it’s time we knew where this kill kill mentality actually came from.

New Zealand is a member of the IUCN which stands for International Union for Conservation of  Nature – on the international stage NZ is part of the Oceania group  run by the Department of Conservation. Its government agencies are:

The IUCN was founded in 1948. Taken from their website it says this:

”….located near Geneva, Switzerland. The Union brings together 86 states, 120 government agencies, 825 national and 92 international non-governmental organisations, 34 affiliate organisations and through its Commissions about 11,000 experts and scientists from more than 160 countries around the world…”

IUCN’s mission is to influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable. The Union has three components: its member organisations, its six scientific commissions, and its professional secretariat.

IUCN is the only environmental organisation to have official observer status at the United Nations General Assembly.

NGOs connected to this in NZ are:

They all aim for ecological integrity (purity, my word).

All over the world the word has gone out that all creatures great and small that are not indigenous to that land will be terminated.  It’s not just New Zealand

IUCN GUIDELINES FOR THE PREVENTION OF BIODIVERSITY LOSS CAUSED BY ALIEN INVASIVE SPECIES 

”….. Biological diversity faces many threats throughout the world. One of the major threats to native biological diversity is now acknowledged by scientists and governments to be biological invasions caused by alien invasive species.  The impacts of alien invasive species are immense, insidious, and usually irreversible. They may be as damaging  to native species and ecosystems on a global scale as the loss and degradation of habitats…”

its goals and objectives are …. sound familiar?

”……to prevent further losses of biological diversity due to the deleterious effects of alien invasive species. The intention is to assist governments and management agencies to give effect to Article 8 (h) of the Convention on Biological Diversity, which states that: “Each Contracting Party shall, as far as possible and as appropriate: …(h) Prevent the introduction of, control or eradicate those alien species which threaten ecosystems, habitats or species….”

Then there is the CBD which is Convention on Biodiversity and is a legally binding multilateral treaty from the UN of which NZ is a member.  It has three main goals:

“…The conservation of biological diversity (or biodiversity); the sustainable use of its components; and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources.

In other words, its objective is to develop national strategies for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. It is often seen as the key document regarding sustainable development. The Convention was opened for signatures at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro on 5 June 1992 and entered into force on 29 December 1993. At the 2010 10th Conference of Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity in October in Nagoya, Japan, the Nagoya Protocol was adopted…”

or said another way

Protecting Biodiversity.

“….The current decline in biodiversity is largely the result of human activity and represents a serious threat to human development. Despite mounting efforts over the past 20 years, the loss of the world’s biological diversity, mainly from habitat destruction, over-harvesting, pollution and the inappropriate introduction of foreign plants and animals, has continued. Biological resources constitute a capital asset with great potential for yielding sustainable benefits.

Urgent and decisive action is needed to conserve and maintain genes, species and ecosystems, with a view to the sustainable management and use of biological resources…”

Another part of this is the Invasive Species Specialty group 

Their mission statement says:
“….The Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG) aims to reduce threats to natural ecosystems and the native species they contain by increasing awareness of invasive alien species, and of ways to prevent, control or eradicate them….”

When you hear the DoC and the minister for the Environment talk of eradicating species this is what they are talking about .  This is what they are instructed to do as a member state of the UN.

Here in NZ we are watching the eradication of  wild game – food that many rely on to feed their families –  hunting is as kiwi as rugby – but a wild food industry is being slowly eradicated under the guise of PFNZ .

NZ has no wild mammals as such,  all wild game including trout existing here now is non native and earmarked for eradication, despite them being brought in over 100 years ago.  The various NZ bodies of these organisations do not come out directly and say this of course,  instead they are doing it by stealth, and the best tool in the box for this eradication appears to be the deadly Sodium fluoroacetate commonly referred to as 1080.

SOURCE

https://www.infonews.co.nz/news.cfm?l=1&t=0&id=117063

The blue macaw parrot that inspired “Rio” is now officially extinct in the wild

In the animated film “Rio,” a Spix’s Macaw named Blu flies all the way from Minnesota to Rio de Janeiro because he’s the last living male of his species and that’s where Jewel, the last living female, lives. Blu and Jewel ultimately fall in love, have a baby and the movie ends happily – with the hope that the literal lovebirds can save their species. In the real world, however, Blu would’ve been too late.

A new study by BirdLife International, a global partnership of conservation organizations that strive to conserve bird species around the world, reveals that in recent years several bird species have lost their fight for survival. And sadly, one of those species is the beautiful Spix’s Macaw. The species is now considered extinct in the wild, although some of the birds survive in breeding programs.

While the vast majority of bird extinctions in recent centuries have occurred on isolated islands, five of the eight highlighted by this study occurred in South America – four in Brazil alone – a tragic statement on the impact of deforestation in that part of the world.

READ MORE

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/blue-spixs-macaw-parrot-that-inspired-rio-is-extinct-in-wild/

One in eight bird species threatened with extinction, global study finds (note, NZ’s Kea also under threat)

NOTE: Our own Kea in NZ are nearing extinction…

With a long history of poisoning Kea, DoC is set to finish off what remains – Dr Jo Pollard


From the Guardian

Here, a “Report on the state of the world’s birds reveals a biodiversity crisis driven by intensive farming, with once-common species such as puffins and snowy owls now at risk.”

puffins-2819126_1280.jpg
The once-widespread Atlantic puffin is now listed as vulnerable on the red list of threatened species. Photo: Pixabay

One in eight bird species are threatened with global extinction, and once widespread creatures such as the puffin, snowy owl and turtle dove are plummeting towards oblivion, according to the definitive study of global bird populations.

The State of the World’s Birds, a five-year compendium of population data from the best-studied group of animals on the planet, reveals a biodiversity crisis driven by the expansion and intensification of agriculture.

In all, 74% of 1,469 globally threatened birds are affected primarily by farming. Logging, invasive species and hunting are the other main threats.

“Each time we undertake this assessment we see slightly more species at risk of extinction – the situation is deteriorating and the trends are intensifying,” said Tris Allinson, senior global science officer for BirdLife International, which produced the report. “The species at risk of extinction were once on mountaintops or remote islands, such as the pink pigeon in Mauritius. Now we’re seeing once widespread and familiar species – European turtle doves, Atlantic puffins and kittiwakes – under threat of global extinction.”

READ MORE

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/23/one-in-eight-birds-is-threatened-with-extinction-global-study-finds

 

Southland District Council has told a correspondent that the recent helicopter tour of Fiordland by 30 odd international bankers & DoC was ‘philanthropic’ … and nary a whisper from mainstream media?

Philanthropic? The marrying of that term and the banking industry in my opinion is somewhat of an oxymoron. Think about that…

“philanthropist” … a person who seeks to promote the welfare of others, especially by the generous donation of money to good causes.

A reader who, after recently hearing of the 6-helicopter tour of Fiordland by 30 bankers including the heads of Hong Kong Goldman Sachs and the Dept of Conservation, wrote to the Mayor of Southland District Council to get some clarification of its purpose. It is further confirmed that the group was indeed The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the reply is intriguing. One would have to ask, why wasn’t this headline news? An important visit by no less than thirty international bankers purveying their chosen area of shall we say ‘investment’ and not a squeak about it in mainstream media? Curious indeed.

Here is the letter sent and the response recently received (name of correspondent withheld as requested):

Dear Mr Tong,

I have been informed that:

“Six Squirrel helicopters were chartered from Alpine Helicopters, Wanaka. They only have five Squirrels so one was chartered in by them.

Apparently, Director-General of Conservation Lou Sanson, and presumably other DoC” people, “took a pile of international bankers on a Tiki Tour. I am told the Hong Kong-based head of Goldman Sachs was one of them.

They went to Fiordland – landing in the Murchison Mountains, (Takahe), Chalky Island (Kakapo) in Chalky Inlet, and Resolution Island in Dusky Sound.”

I wonder if you were aware of this trip because it seems to be in your area?

Perhaps there is an innocent explanation why 30 international bankers would land on Resolution Island, Chalky Island and on the Murchisons.

I have emailed the Member for Southland-Clutha for his view on the same matter.

I look forward to your early response from yourself or from the Councilor for the ward concerned.

Best regards

(name provided)

 

And he responded:

Good morning  xxxxxxx

Thank you for your email.

I am aware of the charter that was undertaken by a group from an international conservancy board.  I find it heartening that this group of people, ones that are involved in international conservation efforts at their own cost, actually get out and about to see what their money is helping to do.

I have been to all of the areas you have mentioned and I have seen the work the Department of Conservation is doing.  On one occasion I had the pleasure of releasing 2 (of 10) Takahe into the Murchison’s, a day I will always remember.

Some of this work would not be possible without the monetary efforts from a group such as you have described, so I do believe there is an innocent explanation.

As Mayor I am proud of those efforts and encourage others to do the same.  I don’t believe this was a “pile of international bankers on a tiki tour”.  I understand that it was a controlled and coordinated charter where the philanthropists gained a knowledge and understanding by seeing Fiordland up close.

I don’t believe there is anything else I can say on the matter,  but thank you for your enquiry.

Yours in Southland

Gary Tong
Mayor
Southland District Council
PO Box 903
Invercargill  9840


Feedback about The Nature Conservancy group

We have also had feedback about The Nature Conservancy group from another reader who lived in an area that was taken over by TNC. The comment is quoted below with permission, names also withheld as requested:

“…you are right about the Nature Conservancy. They bought up a large swathe of land on my former home, the island of Molokai, Hawaii. I knew a local gal there, young and strong, who quit working for them. Why? First, they fenced off the land. Then they brought in sharp shooters from airplanes to “eliminate” the”non-native species” — goats and pigs.

I overheard waterway workers complain that the dead carcasses were rotting right in there the aqueduct that goes through tunnels from that side of the island to the population on the other side — as drinking and ag water. Then they sought to eliminate the “non-native” flora. That’s why she quit. They had her spraying toxic herbicides all day long, and she was afraid of becoming sterile! Also, when they purchase a piece of land, they rope it off for “conservation” and people are not allowed to go there and enjoy the beauty any more.”

 

A big thank you to our two informants.

Photo: Resolution Island, Fiordland NZ, Wikipedia

Coromandel conservation group is calling for a halt to regional funding of toxin use on private land for wild animal control

IMG_8679

PRESS RELEASE:

A Coromandel conservation group is calling for a halt to regional funding of toxin use on private land for wild animal control.

The Upper Coromandel Landcare Assocation (UCLA) is asking Waikato Regional Council to suspend any further cash grants to “community” groups for placement of toxin 1080 and anticoagulant rat poisons on private properties on the peninsula.

UCLA cited a $41,000 grant to the Moehau Environment Group, a local contractor to WRC, for placement this summer of the poisons in bait stations on hundreds of hectares in Port Charles in an operation opposed by many landowners in the small community. In addition to concerns over secondary poisoning of protected native species and inhumane controls generally, local residents have objected to extreme danger from toxic animal carcasses on neighbouring properties, as well as poisons entering the food chain.

A recent memorandum from the Department of Conservation confirmed that 1080 resides in the environment and food chain after placement. The toxin has been implicated in the near-fatal poisoning of three Waikato residents after they ate wild pork.

According to UCLA spokesperson Reihana Robinson, there are safe, affordable, and acceptable alternatives to use of residual toxins, including trapping and hunting. “The $41,000 MEG grant, much of which covered 1080 poisoning on the property of the group’s own coordinator and her neighbour, is a dangerous, irresponsible, and wasteful use of regional rates dollars.”

IMG_8687

“Locals cannot walk dogs safely along the main road, children cannot safely explore up the Tangiaro Valley, families can not harvest nutritional wild food, and unsuspecting landowners may wind up with hazardous toxins on their own properties,” Robinson said. “And as for our tourism-based economy, visitors are being greeted with kilometres of skull-and-crossbone warning signs instead of the pristine bush they expected.”

“We are not talking conservation estate or protection of crown land. This is public funding of dangerous poisons on private properties within metres of property lines and roads, with toxins potentially migrating onto other people’s land.”

UCLA notes that hundreds of thousands of ratepayer dollars are being directed by the regional council this term to so-called “community groups” for possum, rat, and mustelid control with little or no accountability and without wider community support.

“It’s easy for council staff to farm out control work with a few big cheques to a few eco-contractors,” Robinson said. “But unfortunately, it is harmful not only to the environment, but to ratepayers and residents, and to regional council’s own relations with the wider community.”

IMG_8685

 

Singer Song-writer releases anti-1080 song “Poison Rain”

‘Poison Rain’ calls for an end to 1080 poison and other rodenticides in New Zealand, poison that is banned in many countries. The song asks for a better solution to be found, one that does not involve tons of poison continually tipped on New Zealand’s native forests.

From naturalmedicine.net.nz
by Katherine Smith

Singer-Songwriter Aly Cook as she releases a newly commissioned song ‘Poison Rain’. (Electronic Acoustic Adult Contemporary) The song has been “self penned” and co produced with Jay Pheye in his little Golden Bay Studio and mastered by Benny Tones. ‘Poison Rain’ is now available for pre-sale on Itunes with the official release being on Friday 9th of Feb.

The song may be purchased from the links below.

All proceeds from the sale of ‘Poison Rain’ will go back into paid promotion of the TV Wild video and the song to the public and to continue the lobby to the NZ Government TO BAN the USE of 1080 and similar aerial dropped poisons. :

POISON RAIN ITUNES: https://itunes.apple.com/nz/album/id1342088626

OR

Key2Store ​http://www.key2artistpromotions.com.au/store

‘Poison Rain’ calls for an end to 1080 poison and other rodenticides in New Zealand, poison that is banned in many countries. The song asks for a better solution to be found, one that does not involve tons of poison continually tipped on New Zealand’s native forests.

The song now has its own Facebok page where you can see the music video: https://www.facebook.com/stopthedropnz/videos/287934298401454/

To learn more about eh issue of 1080, one option is to watch the film Poisoning Paradisehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQRuOj96CRs

Aly Cook became intent on looking into 1080 poison after a conversation she had with friends who​featured on a TV Wild Video​. New Zealand farmers were interviewed in the video who had all suffered stock losses from 1080 poison drops. These farmers had been instructed by various government departments to put their compensation payouts down to ‘track maintenance’ or ‘stock food’, after their animals had tested positive for 1080 poisoning. Other farmers were asked to sign confidentiality clauses. ​watch the video here

This conversation lead Aly to look more into safe ways to reduce the number of stoats, rats and possums in the NZ bush. If there was nothing to hide, the farmers would not have been instructed to lie on an invoice.The more Aly looked into it, the more oxymorons she found. DOC claims 1080 did not kill invertebrates… yet 1080 was developed as an insecticide.

Aly says … “There are lies everywhere covering up, for example, the recent ‘so called’ botulism case in which a family who had consumed wild pork were hospitalised due to life-threatening illness.

(Here is the interview with the actual family and excerpts from their medical notes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j6i4pZ5RYI4&t=570s)

The hunter’s dog died the day the wild pork was collected . After eating the pork it made the family so violently ill that they were thrashing around and the hospital staff had to strap them into their beds for days”.

The family tested negative for botulism yet they were not tested for 1080 poisoning until 18 days later following a lawyer being engaged by the family. I urge kiwis to watch this documentary and also think about what this is doing to our clean and green image. We have to find a better solution to pest control than this”.

READ MORE

http://www.naturalmedicine.net.nz/news/singer-song-writer-releases-anti-1080-song-poison-rain/

Why is HDC allowing the felling of a protected Totara tree on a formerly Council-owned Foxton property, by the new owners Willis & Bond / Compassion Horowhenua? (amended article)

The original article posted earlier stated that the tree was a Kauri … apologies, it is in fact a Totara, but still a protected species. This is the original with amendments.

The Totara in question is on a property now owned by Willis & Bond / Compassion Horowhenua Housing. They are the new owners of Johnston Street community housing that was formerly Council owned. The tree to the right of the fence in the photo is to be cut back, that one is on Council property (Seaview Gardens). However the other tree to the left is to be felled. This native Totara is not currently listed as a ‘notable tree’, the only thing I understand that could prevent its being felled.  The by-laws apparently have recently changed in the Horowhenua preventing the species from being protected there. So how is this a forward move? Felling a protected native species? Have local iwi been consulted on this? Here we have the usual UN ‘sustainable’ spin that balances sustainable economies with sustainable environments … guess which one wins out, every time?

Copy of Jan 2018 015

It should in my opinion be cut back (for easier ongoing maintenance of the buildings if that is what is required) … but not felled. That is very backward thinking.

The following article reflects the direction Councils are taking in their professions of Treaty Partnership with regard to native trees. Their websites tend to pay lip service only to the Treaty. It is described in the article how the Auckland Council failed to support a rāhui placed on the Waitakere Forest to protect Kauri, another protected species.

“The council’s Environment and Community Committee chose to reject the rāhui request made byTe Kawarau-a-Maki, deciding instead to close only high-risk and medium-risk tracks.”

Read the article: Why aren’t people listening? Māori scientists on why rāhui are important

So it would appear the Horowhenua District Council is moving in a similar direction? With recent by-law changes the protected species is now set for the chop.

Note: I have requested of Council today (5th Feb) that the tree be made ‘notable’. They’ve referred my request to a ‘Strategic Planner’ to respond. Please consider requesting the same by sending an email to:

CustomerServices@horowhenua.govt.nz

EnvirowatchHorowhenua

 

Why is HDC allowing the felling of a protected Totara tree on a formerly Council-owned Foxton property, by the new owners Willis & Bond / Compassion Horowhenua?

The Totara in question is on a property now owned by Willis & Bond / Compassion Horowhenua Housing. They are the new owners of Johnston Street community housing that was formerly Council owned. The tree to the right of the fence in the photo is to be cut back, that one is on Council property (Seaview Gardens). However the other tree to the left is to be felled. This native Totara is not currently listed as a ‘notable tree’, the only thing I understand that could prevent its being felled.  The by-laws apparently have recently changed in the Horowhenua preventing the species from being protected there. So how is this a forward move? Felling a protected native species? Have local iwi been consulted on this?

Copy of Jan 2018 015

It should in my opinion be cut back (for easier ongoing maintenance of the buildings if that is what is required) … but not felled. That is very backward thinking.

The following article reflects the direction Councils are taking in their professions of Treaty Partnership with regard to native trees. Their websites tend to pay lip service only to the Treaty. It is described in the article how the Auckland Council failed to support a rāhui placed on the Waitakere Forest to protect Kauri, another protected species.

“The council’s Environment and Community Committee chose to reject the rāhui request made byTe Kawarau-a-Maki, deciding instead to close only high-risk and medium-risk tracks.”

Read the article: Why aren’t people listening? Māori scientists on why rāhui are important

 

So it would appear the Horowhenua District Council is moving in a similar direction? With recent by-law changes the protected species is now set for the chop.

Note: I have requested of Council today (5th Feb) that the tree be made ‘notable’. They’ve referred my request to a ‘Strategic Planner’ to respond. Please consider requesting the same by sending an email to:

CustomerServices@horowhenua.govt.nz

EnvirowatchHorowhenua

 

 

 

Prince William whose family owns one sixth of the planet argues for urgent depopulation efforts in Africa

Prince William recently warned that the population growth in Africa is putting a tremendous amount of pressure on the natural world and driving many species of animals to extinction…. naturalnews.com

Those with the largest land assets have hastened to the propaganda barricades to prove that there is hardly any land in the world at all …. Kevin Cahill

I really don’t think William’s mother Diana would be too pleased with his plug right now. He is clearly following obediently in the footsteps of his father and his grandfather who are also advocates of depopulation. Note however that culling of the population never includes themselves. I’m introducing here Mike Adam’s excellent exposé of what is going on in America with regard to depopulation, right under your noses. The African American population is being targeted (and has been for a long time) for depopulation. Many will know of course (who have not hitherto been believed) that indigenous people have been targeted from day dot literally. That meaning since the colonizer set foot and proceeded to rape & pillage the resources of the respective nations, erstwhile brandishing bibles and pronouncing peace and good will to all. Later brandishing treaties and the like in efforts to acquire most of the lands of the said peoples… by hook or by crook. Crook mostly. As we know they’ve been most successful at that (ironically for the ‘civilization’ cause of course) …. what’s lesser known is their genocidal/depop efforts back then. If you’ve read the true histories you’ll know this. The poisonings for instance of Australian Aboriginal people, hunting with guns and cruel man traps, poisoning in NZ of non-sellers (sugar and flour policy), many many more of outright brutal wholesale slaughter, witness the atrocious genocides in the Americas. Not room here to cover all that, there is just so much & I will leave it for another post, but with this item about Prince William, whose great great grandmother was instrumental in claiming for his family enough of the planet that they boasted the sun ne’er set on it, I think it’s a bit rich for him to be calling for Africa’s depopulation. I’m reminded also in this of the late Russell Means’ interview, ‘Welcome to the Reservation’. So now we are all being culled yet indigenous people have endured culling for hundreds of years. This is truly shocking and still most don’t know about it because our history books lied by way of omission.

So also we are currently being lied to about the amount of land available on the planet to sustain all of human and animal life because it suits the agenda well. Enter here the research of Kevin Cahill who looked at the actual ownership of lands planet wide. It hadn’t been done before, surprizingly he says.

“…land is not scarce. In fact there are 33,558,400,010 acres of land on earth, and only 6,600 million people to occupy those acres…”

So why is a totally unrelated member of British ‘Royalty’ assuming speaker rights for the conservation of Africa under the banner of ‘no room for us all’? And advocating the culling of that nation’s people? This subtle and constant dig at overpopulation in Africa as being the cause of hunger and all manner of problems is merely a cover up for all that’s gone before. Most folk balk at that information and won’t believe it because of what we’ve been led to believe by mainstream media … but the information is all there if they care to read it. For starters read Susan George’s exposé on why there is hunger in Africa and other so called ‘underdeveloped’ nations, titled ‘How the Other Half Dies’ (download at our resources page). It exposes the modus operandi of greedy agribiz corporations. Then read the late Walter Rodney’s ‘How Europe Underdeveloped Africa’ (also available at resources). And after that, Kevin Cahill’s ‘Who Owns the World: The Surprising Truth About Every Piece of Land on the Planet’ – you’ll learn some surprising facts about land ownership from the latter. Cahill can also be found on Youtube. He uncovers from his research, the fact that our human population is relatively landless and has been throughout history. A very small elite owns most of the land.

“…the ethical question arising from the history of land ownership is simple” says Cahill: “Why did the planetary population put up with a continuous crime, a crime committed mainly by the ethical leadership of the planet in the form of sovereigns and their supporting priesthoods? The leadership preached morals and good conduct, while engaging in the basest of greed and misconduct, a greed for land that regularly killed thousands, hundreds of thousands, and in many cases, millions. Hypocrisy is bad enough of itself. In relation to ethics and land, it has proved continuously lethal to the race throughout history … the issue of land ownership is almost universally the subject of deceit by those in authority and those behind it … ”

Further he nails it by saying …

“The core greed of sovereigns – now replaced by states … [operating on the same principle] – has, through the misuse of land and the resources that go with the land, put the future of the planetary population at risk. The ecological and environmental leadership never properly address, indeed never address, the issue of land ownership & its role in conservation. To do so they would have to address their masters in governments and ruling establishments and profoundly disturb them – something they will never do.”

Who owns all the land has been kept fairly under wraps. Cahill found in researching that the Queen of England owns one sixth of the planet. And if you’ve a mind to research this, do, because how it is held and the law around that is very interesting indeed & more than I can describe in this short article. Just read the book, it’s an eye opener. My point here is to introduce you to the concept that what we’ve been led to believe for years is not factual. The last quote there from Cahill about why the use of land’s not been addressed properly is important. The author tells us that land is not scarce. In fact there are 33,558,400,010 acres of land on earth, and only 6,600 million people to occupy those acres (as at 2010). (This excludes Antarctica, not added into the land mass tally). So, there are 5.2 acres of land available to every man, woman and child on the earth. If you are rich says Cahill, this acreage will seem minuscule, but if you are among the 85% of the earth’s population who own no land at all, it will seem like a dream. Others who have crunched the numbers tell us the entire world’s population could fit into the state of Texas. Or NZ.

So as per this article from naturalnews.com you will learn more of the history behind this carry on. They are currently in the business of depopulation, as William is urging, and blatantly targeting blacks. The background history of this phenomenon is eugenics and the story is not pretty. All on the video.

READ THE ARTICLE & SEE THE VIDEO

https://www.naturalnews.com/2017-11-06-prince-william-argues-for-urgent-depopulation-efforts-in-africa.html

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

 

With a long history of poisoning Kea, DoC is set to finish off what remains – Dr Jo Pollard

DoC SET TO POISON OFF REMAINING KEA

by Dr Jo Pollard (BSc (Hons, PhD))

Posted to Facebook by Carol Sawyer

“The species is now on the brink of extinction” Dr Jo Pollard

“The New Zealand Government’s Department of Conservation (DoC) is embarking on its largest aerial poisoning programme ever this year and endangered kea (Nestor notabilis), NZ’s mountain parrot, are almost certain to die.

DoC has a very long history of poisoning kea. Aerial poisoning with food baits laced with sodium monofluoroacetate (“1080”) was found to be killing kea more than 50 years ago and the species is now on the brink of extinction. Although the government has made no attempt to formally assess numbers, some estimates in 1986 and 1992 were already as low as 1000 birds. There may be very few kea left. Complete absences are being reported in areas of human activity (tramping huts, ski fields, car parks) where they have traditionally gathered.

In DoC studies over the last decade, an average of 12% of marked kea have been reported dead immediately after aerial 1080 poisoning, with a range up to 78%. Now that DoC are embarking on even more intensive, more extensive 1080 poisoning, there seems to be little hope for the species’ survival in the wild.

How is it that a government department charged with conserving species can cause this carnage?

New Zealand’s conservation management has reached a critically low point where science and ecology have been abandoned in favour of feverish poisoning of “pest” species. Tellingly, DoC recently described itself as a “pest control agency”.

According to DoC, it is pests that are endangering kea, therefore the outcome of poisoning will be beneficial. There are serious flaws with this idea.

Firstly, aerial baiting with 1080 poison is very poor at controlling pests, including mice, rats and stoats. Mouse numbers rise almost immediately afterwards; it is thought mice may be able to detect the toxin in food baits and that they flourish because competing species are poisoned off. Rat numbers are usually (not always) low immediately after poisoning, but they breed and re-invade rapidly and within months are typically far more numerous than before, often reaching plague levels. Stoats are sometimes killed, sometimes not (they have to eat poisoned prey to die, because they do not eat the cereal baits), but survivors and invaders can flourish post-poisoning as numbers of their main prey species, rats and mice, escalate. Surviving stoats are also known to turn to eating native birds after poisoning, when rat numbers have suddenly plummeted.

DoC’s answer to this problem is to now increase the frequency and intensity of poisoning. It is planning to spread double the number of baits, then if there are surviving rats, repeat the double-sowing. However that strategy does not help with the problem of non-acceptance of poisoned baits by mice. Whether rat and stoat numbers will be better controlled is unknown. In previous DoC operations, and in other pest populations (flies, laboratory rats and rabbits) repeated 1080 poisoning has become increasingly less effective because pests have developed behavioural and/or genetic resistance. One thing is for sure- kea and other rare native species will be severely at risk.

Secondly, there is no scientific evidence that mammalian pests are the main cause of the kea’s demise as is being claimed by DoC. Its own studies and ornithological studies had previously concluded (in the 1960s, 1990s and last decade) that although living in the company of stoats, kea were “relatively immune” to predation.

In the last few years DoC has made an intensive effort to prove that stoats are a major predator of kea. The evidence that its much-vaunted, very expensive 1080 poisoning programmes are killing kea has been very inconvenient and it has done its best to create the illusion that 1080 actually helps kea.

But DoC’s recent documents show only spurious, indefensible figures based on “seed rain” and contortions of historic data. Hundreds of hours of camera surveillance inside and outside kea nests have produced very little evidence of predation: at the Kea Konvention in April this year we were repeatedly shown a photograph of a stoat that was “about to get” a nesting kea, and a video that failed to run. Even if DoC’s surveillance had shown lots of predation, nest monitoring in itself is known to attract predators and cause adults to abandon chicks so such “evidence” would be hopelessly biased.

So kea are set to disappear, and DoC is set to blame pests, rather than 1080 poisoning, for their demise. The public will be none the wiser unless they are interested and motivated enough to question DoC’s propaganda.

The plight of kea should cause alarm for anyone concerned about the fate of New Zealand’s ecological heritage. Not only birds, but all air-breathing organisms including bacteria, fungi, plants and invertebrates are affected by 1080 (it interferes with the Krebs cycle used in respiration).

The toxin has a marked ability to spread: in cereal dust and fragments created during aerial spreading, in poisoned animals, baits carried by animals, urine, faeces, carcasses and water. On DoC’s own admission, reliable data on poisoning death rates exist only for six endemic birds. Of those, two (fern birds Megalurus punctatus and kea) have been found to be poisoned in large numbers. What is happening to the rest of New Zealand’s endemic species?

For the scientific basis of this article and more information on kea please see http://1080science.co.nz/scientific-reviews-of-1080/

Dr Jo Pollard (BSc (Hons), PhD) is an independent scientist, with particular interests in animal welfare, NZ’s ecology, and scientific integrity.

 

Maggie Barry’s questionable facts on pest eradication

Metiria Turei challenged the National Government’s woeful funding of the Department of Conservation and claimed that since 2008 there had been a cut in real terms of $422 million dollars. This concern was expressed in the context of Environment Commissioner Jan Wright’s recent report that stated that 80% of New Zealand’s native bird species were in bad shape and 35% were in serious trouble (close to extinction). Some populations are so small that grandparents are forced to mate with grandchildren and inbreeding within many populations is a major concern.

True to form, Maggie Barry resorted to a personal attack:

“I guess because the member has never been anywhere near Government she doesn’t understand very much about the budget process. The increase in spending in DoC is at $107 million dollars this year, it has been a 20% increase since 2008. The member’s wilful misrepresentation of the figures is pretty pathetic, even by that member’s standards.”

While it must be acknowledged that the Government is embarking on a limited pest eradication programme, this should be regarded in the context of cuts and severe underfunding over previous years. It is the Minister of Conservation who is misrepresenting the facts as Kevin Hague found out in 2016 through Parliamentary Library research.

The following can easily be found through simple Google searches:

  • 2009, DoC had to cut its budget by $54 million, or $13.5 million over four years. This meant almost 200,000 hectares of planned pest eradication did not go ahead.
  • 2011, one hundred jobs were cut from the department to keep within the restricted budget.
  • 2012-13, a further $11.5 million was cut from the the department’s funding, over and above the previous cuts.
  • 2013, there were 140 more job losses (330 since 2009, around 15% of the workforce).
  • 2016, an associate professor in the school of accounting and commercial law at Victoria University noted that the Vote Conservation for the 16/17 year was $41.8 million less than the previous year.
  • 2017, $21 million over 4 years for pest eradication and $76 million to spend on tourist infrastructure.

READ MORE

http://localbodies-bsprout.blogspot.co.nz/2017/06/maggie-barrys-fake-facts.html

NZ’s whitebait species will be totally extinct by 2034, warn environmental scientists

Header Photo Credit: Wikipedia (white baiting net on Hutt River NZ)

So the whitebait are declining our esteemed experts notice. Note, as always with mainstream, they doctor up aka re frame the terminology to make the information more palatable. For example the term “pollution” has become “declining water quality” which is, as we’ve been seeing for at least a century now, human sewage discharged into the waterways, industrial discharge from chemical factories and farming run off including pesticides, fertilizers and animal excrement, as well as the trampling of the edges of the waterways which whitebait need to spawn“. This pollution has all resulted in waterways that are too trashed & fouled for any living organism … and this is re framed as “a reduction in habitat”. Those terms are less distasteful than just plain “shit in the water”. It takes the spotlight off the main polluters also, these are industries run by corporations largely and we need to stay in bed with those because after all economic development is a priority over environment …. as we all know. This is also known as ‘sustainable development’. ‘Yeah right” I hear you say & I totally agree. Sustainable development is a scam right out of Agenda 21 now 2030 (the updated more fascist version, (see also Agenda 21/30 in NZ). And you’re thinking ‘fascist’ is rather extreme a term … not if you really look hard. And especially if you’ve ever tried to stop this pollution. In some countries you could be murdered for such a ‘crime’ as exposing polluting practices, however here in New Zealand (clean and green, GE free, corruption free, nuclear free and so on is the general fake spin) we’re a little more covert than that.   Note in their list of possible solutions … “ending commercial whitebaiting, introducing catch allowances for recreational whitebaiters and an independent review of the long-term sustainability of the fishery …” they all focus on fishing and nothing much about addressing the “declining water quality”. 
If you watch the following video from the Horowhenua you’ll hear also the commentary on how the whitebait breeding grounds are being destroyed by dairy beef cattle in un fenced water ways. (Dairy cattle are not allowed in the waterways, dairy beef cattle are … go figure on that one, courtesy of our Regional Council).

EnvirowatchRangitikei


NZ’s whitebait species will be totally extinct by 2034, warn environmental scientists

1200px-Whitebait_Fritter
Whitebait fritters a Kiwi favourite Photo Credit: Wikipedia

From TVNZ.co.nz

Environmental scientists are warning the government that all five native whitebait species will become extinct by 2034 if action isn’t taken immediately.

Massey University’s Kyleisha Foote and Pierce McNie presented a petition with more than 3000 signatures to the Primary Production Select Committee this morning.

They say commercial whitebait fishing, declining water quality, and a reduction in habitat are behind the falling number of whitebait.

According to the scientists, without immediate action one of the five whitebait species could be extinct within three years and all five will be extinct in 2034.

“We have known about the decline for a long time yet there has been no change in the management of the fishery in the last 20 years,” said Foote.

“We’re thinking if we don’t do anything now there’s going to be no whitebait left for recreation whitebaiters to go and be able to catch a feed.”

 

They made a raft of recommendations including ending commercial whitebaiting, introducing catch allowances for recreational whitebaiters and an independent review of the long-term sustainability of the fishery.

READ MORE & SEE VIDEO

https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/nzs-whitebait-species-totally-extinct-2034-warn-environmental-scientists