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Central Otago Mirror - - OPINION -

Our feathered friends

I’m lis­ten­ing to bell­birds singing as I read ‘‘Food is the way to a bird’s heart’’ ( Mir­ror, April 17). I too ‘‘re­mem­ber my feathered friends’’ each win­ter. I make up sugar wa­ter (half cup sugar/a litre of wa­ter) that I pro­vide in a cat/stoat/fer­ret-proof hang­ing con­tainer well away from branches out­side our house. Hav­ing planted gums and Gre­vil­lia vic­to­riae (win­ter flow­er­ing) plus cab­bage trees, pit­tospo­rums, co­pros­mas, flax, kowhai and Griselinia lit­toralis, which also have flow­ers and fruit bell­birds and tui eat in th­ese cooler months, we are kept en­ter­tained with song year round. Killing wasp nests with car­baryl min­imises th­ese sugar-wa­ter thieves as well as us­ing traps bor­rowed from Land­care Re­search to lessen the num­ber of wild skinny cats com­ing down off the hill, plus the odd stoat and fer­ret. Hav­ing pos­sum traps work­ing year round and a well aimed gun to shoot mag­pies keeps th­ese pests and bird­killers down in num­ber too. We may not have a preda­tor­proof fence but by keep­ing bird­killer num­bers down (of wild cats, stoats, fer­rets, pos­sums and rats) we are lucky enough to en­joy a nat­u­ral dawn cho­rus. It’s great to know oth­ers re­mem­ber our feathered friends each win­ter also.

Lynne Ste­wart, Clyde

Stand­ing ova­tion

Thank you John Buchanan for hav­ing the vi­sion to per­form The Armed Man – A Mass for Peace. Con­grat­u­la­tions to the Cen­tral Otago Re­gional Choir and Cham­ber Orches­tra for your mag­nif­i­cent in­ter­pre­ta­tion of this com­plex score. The evoca­tive and pow­er­ful im­ages of war left your au­di­ence stilled and silent. This mov­ing per­for­mance was richly de­serv­ing of its pro­longed stand­ing ova­tion.

Marg Hamil­ton We wanted ev­ery­one to know the won­der­ful ser­vice that St John and Dun­stan Hos­pi­tal do for this com­mu­nity. Noel and I would like to ex­tend a very spe­cial thank you to the won­der­ful staff of St John Alexan­dra and to the staff at Dun­stan Hos­pi­tal. I was so blessed to re­ceive the most won­der­ful, pro­fes­sional, car­ing sup­port from my ac­ci­dent when I broke my hip through to my re­cov­ery. Thank you from our hearts, with­out you all my re­cov­ery would not have been so speedy and suc­cess­ful. Noel and Mai Timms

Alexan­dra

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