Our annual report always includes a message from the Trust Chair, the highlights and challenges of the previous year and our enormous thanks to all those organisations and individuals who have supported our work.
This year, our Chair, Robin Long, reinforces our vision – sea and shore birds and their habitat across the West Coast Te Tai Poutini are healthy and thriving – highlights the funding challenges, and embraces the changes over the year.
We report on our various projects and, for little penguins or kororā, this meant a poor season apparently linked to a severe cycle of La Niña conditions and the marine heatwaves that it brought last spring and summer.
The little penguin mortality database we share with the Department of Conservation has been invaluable in focussing attention on the key threats to these birds. We have now worked on the data so that it can be viewed on maps providing even more value to our advocacy role and for council planners. It also helps focus our attention on areas where extra action may be needed, perhaps new penguin protection fences.
Speaking of fences, we were very pleased to add fencing in the Limestone Creek area north of Punakaiki and will need to add more fencing between breeding seasons in the next couple of years to completely protect kororā in this section of the coast road.
The report is available as a PDF via the link below, with updates on our Fiordland crested penguin / tawaki work, Cape Foulwind and Seal Island trapping projects, a note about our favourite petrel, the Westland petrel or tāiko, our education programme – much treasured by all the teachers and staff that get to work with Ranger Lucy Waller, and our awareness and advocacy work.
We are so grateful to our donors and sponsors all year round but this is our annual opportunity to put it in writing where everyone can see it. Our heartfelt and huge thanks go to these wonderful individuals and organisations that enable us to help understand and better protect penguins and seabirds.