About the Trust

The West Coast Penguin Trust strives to conserve penguins and other seabirds on the West Coast, ensuring that they and the coastal environment are protected for their intrinsic values.

The Trust is a charitable trust formed in 2006 by local residents concerned at the decline in blue penguin populations, firstly in the Charleston area and then quickly to the whole region.  Our work has extended to the second coast penguin, the Fiordland crested penguin, and to other threatened seabirds.

The Trust conducts research into the ecology of both penguins in order to better understand their needs and threats to them. On the basis of its research, the Trust instigates practical conservation projects that benefit both coastal wildlife and the community. It also advises all four Councils and DOC on penguin management and protection.

We promote awareness of blue penguins (korora), Fiordland crested penguins (tawaki) and other threatened seabirds through participation in community events, media liaison and school education programmes from Karamea to Haast.

The Trust has a wealth of experience behind it. It is directed by volunteer trustees with differing backgrounds and experience, and has been led by eminent seabird ecologist and natural history writer, Kerry-Jayne Wilson, since its inception and until August 2019.  Reuben Lane, as new Chair, brings an abundance of skills to the role, and a team of part-time staff with a variety of complementary skills complete a small, strong team.

Read our latest Annual Report here (August 2020).


Craig Potton MNZM



Reuben Lane


Kerry-Jayne Wilson MNZM

Founding Trustee and immediate past Chair

Jill Cotton

Founding Trustee

Leon Dalziel


Robin Long

Trustee and Tawaki Ranger

Marg Costello


Martin Abel


Zoe Watson



Inger Perkins


Matt Charteris


Lucy Waller

Education and Awareness Ranger

Gerald Freeman

Predator Control Ranger, Cape Foulwind

Luisa Salis-Soglio

Ranger and Masters student, August-November 2019