Southland Forest & Bird Celebrate Some Gains

At the recent Southland Forest & Bird (F&B) AGM, we heard from Fergus Sutherland, long time caretaker of their restoration project, Te Rere, that although the outcome for hoi ho was not good this last year, he was seeing more and more little blue penguins and titi along the coast on this F&B property. The same poor results were being seen for hoi ho right up the east coast, with concerns about pressure on feed species from fishing and increased disease occurring, these elements largely beyond the control of local F&B trying to help this penguin species. However as a result of the predator control and replanting that groups were undertaking, the one benefit becoming obvious has been increased numbers of little blue penguins breeding, along with the titi (muttonbird) being seen to be breeding on the mainland again. The other gain to be celebrated was at the F&B’s Lenz Reserve, near Tautuku, where intensive predator control was being undertaken through a project of the Dunedin F&B, assisted by the South Otago and Southland branches. The numbers of kaka and kerearea (falcon) were noticeably on the increase in this area. If you are interested in helping out with the restoration project at Te Rere, the next planting day will be in August. Watch SERN’s Events page for more information.