Tag Archives: Seagulls

In 1984 the entire western weka population on NZ’s Tawhitinui Island was exterminated in a brodifacoum poison drop (important info here for hunters & fishermen)

Note:  Brodifacoum is a serious rat poison, an anti-coagulant which kills the things that eat it over a long period of time. It has secondary by-kill on animals / things that eat things that have been killed by it.  Instead of slathering poison everywhere it’s time surely that NZ considered eco friendly extermination of pests, given our clean green classification is long gone. So also is our edible wild food. And not only were all the wekas exterminated at Tawhitinui Island, but the following also:

  • Nearly 60% of the Tawharanui Regional Park dotterel population died through eating brodifacoum baits and poisoned sand-hoppers (2004)
  • Brodifacoum residues continued to be found in wildlife more than 24 months after the brodifacoum poison drop in and around the Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project in Nelson (2005)
  • The Rangitoto and Motutapu Island eradication by-kill included dolphins, penguins, fish, numerous dogs and birds
  • Vast numbers of dead mussels washed up on Waiheke Island up to five months after the poison drop
  • Hundreds of dead birds also washed up on Coromandel Peninsula beaches in the months following (2009)
  • More than 10,000 seagulls were killed in Shakespear Regional Park (2011)

EnvirowatchRangitikei

Photo: Wikipedia


 

Huge by-kill of brodifacoum poison

I don’t live in Nelson so dropping 26.5 tonnes of brodifacoum poison into the Brook Waimarama Sanctuary won’t affect me directly, but I care a lot about New Zealand wildlife. I’m the Waikato Regional Councillor for Taupo-Rotorua, and the current Chair of the Environmental and Services Performance Committee.

ACRE, a group that advises Waikato Regional Council, asked councillors to look into our use of brodifacoum during our last Long Term Plan. They were concerned about the bio-accumulation and persistence of brodifacoum in wildlife, and the implications for our food chain. Our EPC Chair at the time, Clyde Graf, agreed to a review.

We invited Penny Fisher, a scientist at Landcare Research to give us readings about brodifacoum and other second-generation anticoagulant rodenticide residues in wildlife. She did a teleconference with our committee; We gathered information from other councils and government agencies and we looked at what’s happening overseas.

A lot of the New Zealand data about brodifacoum by-kill concerned me:

The entire western weka population was exterminated in a brodifacoum drop on Tawhitinui Island (1984); Nearly 60% of the Tawharanui Regional Park dotterel population died through eating brodifacoum baits and poisoned sand-hoppers (2004); Brodifacoum residues continued to be found in wildlife more than 24 months after the brodifacoum poison drop in and around the Rotoiti Nature Recovery Project in Nelson (2005); The Rangitoto and Motutapu Island eradication by-kill included dolphins, penguins, fish, numerous dogs and birds. Vast numbers of dead mussels washed up on Waiheke Island up to five months after the poison drop. Hundreds of dead birds also washed up on Coromandel Peninsula beaches in the months following (2009); More than 10,000 seagulls were killed in Shakespear Regional Park (2011);

Blue cod, mussels, limpets and birds had brodifacoum residues in them after the Ulva Island drop, prompting restrictions on harvesting. Dead robin nestlings on the island were found to have brodifacoum residues, indicating that poisoned invertebrates had been fed to the young birds. Nearly 90% of the weka population was also killed (2011); Brodifacoum and other anticoagulant residues were found in freshwater fish, eels and sediment in Southland (2012); After Great Mercury Island was poisoned, 16 dead seals and a multitude of birds and fish washed up dead on Coromandel beaches (2014); A Landcare Research study of road-killed harrier hawks revealed 78% of those tested had at least one anticoagulant rodenticide in them. Some had as many as four different types. Brodifacoum was common.

It’s dangerous stuff, no doubt.

I asked Auckland Council for the results of their monitoring of feral pigs on islands in the Hauraki Gulf. The reply stated that 13 out of 14 pigs tested positive for brodifacoum residues. Brodifacoum has now been confirmed in fish, shellfish, pigs, bats, deer, eels and birds across New Zealand, which is a concern for those who hunt and fish. There’s also concern for those who commercially harvest wildlife. MPI notified a restricted procurement area for feral pigs in Marlborough due to high levels of brodifacoum residues in pig livers in 2004.

Why would we use brodifacoum when our own scientists have expressed concern about residues persisting in the environment?

Penny Fisher said in 2013 in her Overview/Summary – Environmental Residues of Anticoagulants Used for Pest Control, 10 June 2013.

“There is increasing evidence that uses of anticoagulants for both household rodent control and field pest management are resulting in widespread contamination of both terrestrial and aquatic wildlife. The latter is presumably through carcasses of poisoned animals entering waterways ….”

According to MPI, brodifacoum is the most inhumane toxin we’ve got, causing pain and suffering for days to weeks before an animal succumbs to internal haemorrhaging. Apart from the lethal effects, brodifacoum also causes sub-lethal reproductive and developmental damage. Would you choose to use brodifacoum if you knew it was also going to harm and kill the native species you’re trying to protect?

Personally, I’d prefer to find another method of pest control that’s acceptable to the Nelson community. There are plenty of alternatives.

Kathy White is the Waikato Regional Councillor for Taupo-Rotorua and the current Chair of the Environmental and Services Performance Committee. This is her personal view.

READ MORE

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1709/S00012/huge-by-kill-of-brodifacoum-poison.htm

Landfill expansion granted consents … surprized?

I’m not faintly surprised at this decision. The day I attended the hearing and heard the ‘independent’ Chair’s Freudian slip … “When the consent is granted …”  illustrated quite graphically for me, the extent of the independence of the commission. In addition, all the concerns that any community would naturally have … leachate, trucks, property values … all these were effectively taken off the table. Hamstrung from the start. It is the neighbors of the landfill in particular who will have to live with this. And all those conditions … I’ll be watching keenly to see how strictly they’re adhered to. If it’s anything like the vigilance we have with other consents and pollution of our environment of late, it’s going to be an interesting road forwards.

“The Bonny Glen landfill expansion has been given the go-ahead.

The landfill’s owners, Midwest Disposals has been granted all resource consents to expand the operation.

The decision, released yesterday afternoon, granted the consents for 35 years with land use consents in perpetuity.

It means the size and life of Bonny Glen, near Marton, will increase significantly over the next four decades. The capacity will increase almost five-fold….”

Read the Wanganui Chronicle article by Zaryd Wilson: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/wanganui-chronicle/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503426&objectid=11450949

From the Chronicle … Softening the blow … More tree planting for Bonny Glen

Midwest Disposals has added further planting to its plans for the proposed Bonny Glen landfill expansion.

The minor changes are in response to concerns highlighted by commissioners considering the company’s resource consent application.

Midwest has applied for resource consents with Horizons Regional Council and Rangitikei District Council to extend the life and size of the landfill near Marton. More trees will be planted along the edge of the site to mitigate the effects the landfill will have on the landscape and views…. read article HERE

From the Wanganui Chronicle: Smelly and ugly – but necessary (the Landfill)

Smelly and ugly – but necessary

LEACHATE poisoning the Tutaenui Stream, rampant vermin, toxicity, litter, bad smells, increased truck traffic … the crime sheet against the Bonny Glen landfill near Marton is long and ugly.

That is the way it usually is for those lords of the underworld – rubbish dumps.

The application by the waste facility’s owners, Midwest Disposals, to significantly expand the site has naturally prompted fierce opposition from those who live sufficiently close to suffer from its operation.

That opposition has been well-voiced at the consent hearing in Feilding which wrapped up last month – though some concerning aspects around Bonny Glen’s business, extra traffic and leaching among them, were unfortunately ruled beyond the scope of the three commissioners who will issue their decision in May…. read article HERE

Landfill extension opposed – Manawatu Standard

The Manawatu Standard reports on the submissions hearing.

Landfill extension opposed

25 Feb 2015

“The application has drawn opposition from neighbouring property owners. There were 62 submissions to the resource consent application….

Turakina resident Richard Grant said in his submission that many residents were worried about the effect of water running off the landfill and into a small stream that ran through the town.

He said leachate was an unknown factor and could affect the quality of the water.”

Many other concerns are presented by submitters: READ FULL ARTICLE HERE

Litter, smell and vermin plague tip’s neighbours

The Wanganui Chronicle continues to report on the submissions hearing in Feilding this past week…

Litter, smell and vermin plague tip’s neighbours

By laurel.stowell@wanganuichronicle.co.nz

Litter, smell and vermin from the Bonny Glen Landfill will only increase if it is expanded, Linda O’Neill says.

She and her husband Chris live in one of the closest houses to the Midwest Disposals landfill near Marton. On Thursday they made a submission to the hearing considering whether to allow it to expand.

They oppose the full extent of the expansion, and especially the full 160m height the “mountain of rubbish” would attain.

When they bought their property in 2008 they didn’t know the landfill could expand. At that stage it was due to close either in 2028 or when it was full – whichever happened first….. READ THE ARTICLE HERE