Grebes gone from Qtown Bay
A nest and eggs of endangered crested grebes in Queenstown Bay has washed away, despite a local boatie’s attempt to save them.
A grebe couple made the busy Queenstown waterfront home for four weeks until Lake Wakatipu rose on the weekend and washed away their nest and three eggs.
For two weeks animal-lover and Million Dollar Cruise worker Max Perkins would spend almost an hour before work adjusting the nest and creating a break water.
‘‘As the rain came the lake kept coming up and then I had to put the break water higher,’’ he said.
On the weekend Perkins and his coworkers posted on social media asking if anyone could help with constructing the break water with sand bags, rocks and containers.
As large waves and strong winds increased on Saturday, the pair of grebes left the nest, he said.
‘‘At night it got super rough so mama grebe jumped off the nest and just wandered away.’’
Despite the efforts not paying off and the eggs being washed off, Perkins appreciated the help provided by locals.
Department of Conservation operations manager Geoff Owen said nothing could have been done to save the nest.
‘‘Sometimes it is best to let nature take its course so that these birds can learn how to nest successfully.’’
A pair of rare crested grebes left the nest with three eggs behind on Queenstown Bay once the lake level rose.