LET­TERS TO THE EDI­TOR

Coastal News - - Front Page -

I have read the ar­ti­cles and let­ters re­gard­ing the man­grove is­sue in your lat­est pub­li­ca­tions with great in­ter­est.

I would like to add my voice to those ad­vo­cat­ing and sup­port­ing the con­trol of this in­va­sive plant in what­ever es­tu­ar­ies and har­bours it oc­curs, in­clud­ing those in our home town of Whanga­mata.

Such is­sues al­ways raise con­cerns and diver­gent views and un­for­tu­nately these are of­ten op­posed or sup­ported by mis­in­for­ma­tion, per­sonal in­ter­ests or ig­no­rance.

It is not al­ways pos­si­ble to re­solve such is­sues to the com­plete sat­is­fac­tion of every­one or ev­ery in­ter­est but I firmly be­lieve there is al­ways room for bet­ter un­der­stand­ing and com­pro­mise in such mat­ters.

My un­der­stand­ing of the po­si­tion is that the Har­bour Care Group pro­motes and as­sists ef­forts to halt the ram­pant spread of man­groves that threaten to choke and to­tally dom­i­nate the har­bour es­tu­ar­ine area.

I think maybe there is a mis­con­cep­tion that ‘elim­i­na­tion’ of man­groves is what they are seek­ing as the word ‘re­moval’ is of­ten used rather the cor­rect term — ‘con­trol’.

I cer­tainly sup­port con­trol­ling fur­ther spread of man­groves but con­sider com­plete re­moval to be nei­ther pos­si­ble nor de­sir­able.

My per­sonal in­ter­est is in the wel­fare of all wildlife that in­habit these es­tu­ar­ies. With a back­ground in wildlife pro­tec­tion and habi­tat man­age­ment I spent my work­ing life (47 years) em­ployed by the NZ Wildlife Ser­vice and the Depart­ment of Con­ser­va­tion.

Much of this work and my great­est in­ter­est was in man­ag­ing wa­ter­birds, in­clud­ing threat­ened species and their habi­tats.

I must chal­lenge those who claim man­groves are NZ banded rails’ most val­ued habi­tat.

This species is found liv­ing in a wide va­ri­ety of dense low vege­ta­tion sites as­so­ci­ated with es­tu­ar­ine and fresh­wa­ter habi­tats. They are very much an ‘edge’ in­hab­it­ing bird, of­ten feed­ing out in the open but never far from the se­cu­rity of dense beds of rushes, sedges and other fringe vege­ta­tion — in­clud­ing man­groves.

I think it un­for­tu­nate that some of those peo­ple op­pos­ing fur­ther con­trols of the spread­ing man­groves have com­pletely ig­nored the im­por­tance of the open es­tu­ar­ine sands and mud­flats for a wide va­ri­ety of other wildlife, in­clud­ing those men­tioned by your cor­re­spon­dent Lene Knight in her re­cent let­ter to you.

My hope is that com­mon­sense will pre­vail: That all wildlife species and lo­cal in­ter­ests are taken into con­sid­er­a­tion, in­clud­ing the hu­man in­ter­ests such as fish­ing, kayak­ing etc.

I be­lieve greater lo­cal say in the fu­ture of our es­tu­ar­ine wa­ters will re­sult in bet­ter and more cost ef­fec­tive man­age­ment of these won­der­ful as­sets for this and fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

To stop or un­nec­es­sar­ily limit the con­trol of man­groves on the false premise it will ben­e­fit the banded rail would be an ill in­formed and harm­ful de­ci­sion. JOHN ADAMS

Whanga­mata Over the re­cent hol­i­day pe­riod, and in par­tic­u­lar re­gard to the com­mer­cial events in Wil­liamson Park, the cruis­ing po­lice cars missed en­tirely (I am told), the youths drink­ing, chun­der­ing, re­liev­ing them­selves, and leav­ing bot­tles along fence­lines of the area.

Be­ing be­tween the cars and the houses they were not vis­i­ble to any pass­ing po­lice per­son in a car. I sug­gest the po­lice are is­sued with bikes and ride along the grass verges be­tween houses and parked cars next year.

And here’s hop­ing Wil­liamson Park will re­turn to be­ing a ‘fam­ily’ park for per­pe­tu­ity as in­tended by the gen­er­ous donor. PA­TRI­CIA BYRNE

Whanga­mata I re­fer to the (Coastal News, Feb 15) re­view con­cern­ing my third book.

In the main, a fair re­view. How­ever, I must cor­rect a mis­con­cep­tion that all early Euro­pean maps had a mas­sive land­mass in the south­ern part of the world to act as a counter bal­ance.

In my re­search I pro­duce a num­ber of world maps and a globe made be­tween 1491-1492 — all show no such land mass.

One such map is the 1491 Martel­lus which shows two is­lands on the east­ern side of Aus­tralia. This map is on P56 and around the two is­lands I write: “Could this be New Zealand?” How­ever, some early Euro­pean maps do show a large south­ern land mass and on page 6 such a map is on dis­play with the word­ing: “Terra Aus­tralia Incog­nita”.

Of in­ter­est this 1617 world map clearly has drawn upon it the out­line of the Gulf of Car­pen­taria. Some early maps ap­pear up­side down. MAX HILL Whanga­mata

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.