Sanc­tu­ary sur­vival

The Leader (Nelson) - - FRONT PAGE - SARA MEIJ

For Kather­ine Cham­ber­lain, the prospect of re­leas­ing new bird species into the Brook Waimarama Sanc­tu­ary is the most ex­cit­ing thing.

Cham­ber­lain has been a sanc­tu­ary vol­un­teer for the past decade, mon­i­tor­ing birds and col­lect­ing data for the past eigh­tand-a-half years.

‘‘I’ve got some fan­tas­tic pre-pest erad­i­ca­tion data, it’s been very sta­ble so we ab­so­lutely are look­ing for­ward to be able to mea­sure change,’’ she said.

‘‘[I’m] look­ing for­ward to some of those very rare birds be­com­ing much more com­mon and the birds that are al­ready com­mon be­com­ing much more abun­dant.’’

The sanc­tu­ary’s pest erad­i­ca­tion plan was brought to a halt re­cently when the Brook Val­ley Com­mu­nity Group took le­gal ac­tion, chal­leng­ing the new na­tional reg­u­la­tion for pest con­trol in a bid to put a stop to the op­er­a­tion.

Last week the High Court ruled in favour of the Brook Sanc­tu­ary, al­low­ing for the drop of 24 tonnes of brod­i­fa­coum-laced bait within the fenced area to go ahead this win­ter.

The Brook Val­ley Com­mu­nity Group has an­nounced it will ap­peal the de­ci­sion.

Cham­ber­lain said it had been an emo­tional jour­ney for all the vol­un­teers who had been work­ing for years to cre­ate the sanc­tu­ary in Nelson.

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