Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Waikato biosecurity leader receives national award

Waikato biosecurity leader receives national award


John Simmons with his trophy

Waikato Regional Council’s biosecurity group manager John Simmons found it a nice touch that the trophy for his national pest animal management award was a replica of a kokako.

One of the most satisfying highlights of his work over the years, he says, has been involvement in increasing the population of the endangered forest bird in the King Country from “a few pairs” in the late 1980s to “hundreds” today.

“That increase – which we’ve helped achieve along with the Department of Conservation and the Otorohanga Zoological Society – shows what can be achieved through agencies working together on protecting our threatened, iconic bird species,” says Mr Simmons.

The PC Nelson Memorial Award he has won is from the Biosecurity Institute, a professional body for those working in the biosecurity sector. It is given annually to those who have excelled in animal pest management.

Mr Simmons became involved in biosecurity in the late 1980s following the formation of regional councils from a disparate group of local authorities. He helped drive major changes in animal pest control to improve efficiency and reduce costs to ratepayers. He also helped develop national standards for pest control, while helping to drastically reduce the incidence of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in the Waikato through better control of possums.

“This reduction in bovine TB has been really satisfying given the way it helps protect the regional economy and the possum control involved has a range of other environmental benefits at the same time,” says Mr Simmons.

He is soon to move on from his council job and take up the interim general manager’s position at the Maungatautari Ecological Island Trust, which is overseeing the pest-proof bird sanctuary project around Maungatuatari near Cambridge. He is also planning consultancy work.

“Waikato’s rural-based economy and its many fantastic natural places will continue to need support through control of pests like possums and rats, and I’m committed to remaining part of this kaupapa.”

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

2040 Target And Lower Standards: “Swimmable” Rivers Five Times More Likely To Make You Sick

Forest & Bird has condemned the government’s new water quality standards, warning New Zealanders that they lock in current levels of water pollution and allow for a 5-fold increase in the chance of getting sick from swimming in a river.

“Despite an explicit assurance from Minister Smith that the new water standards would provide for human and ecosystem health, he has failed to deliver on either of these things,” says Forest & Bird CEO Kevin Hague. More>>

ALSO:

 
 

Immigration: Clampdown On Rogue Employers Good First Step

The Human Trafficking Research Coalition is pleased at the new clampdown on rouge employers who exploit migrants announced by Minister Woodhouse this morning, and believes this is a step in the right direction. More>>

ALSO:

Mayor: 750 New Social And Affordable Homes For Wellington (Over A Decade)

The next stage of Wellington’s Housing Upgrade Programme will see at least 750 new units of social and affordable housing built over the next decade, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>

ALSO:

22/2: Christchurch Quake Memorial Unveiled

A city, a region, a nation and an international community impacted by the Canterbury Earthquakes will come together to mark the sixth anniversary of the deadly quake and dedicate Oi Manawa Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial. More>>

ALSO:


November Quakes:

Gordon Campbell: On The Mana-Maori Party Deal

If the self-interest involved wasn’t so blatant, the electorate deal between the Maori Party and Hone Harawira would be kind of poignant. It’s a bit like seeing the remaining members of Guns’n’Roses or the Eagles back on the road touring the nostalgia circuit… playing all the old hits of Maori unity and kaupapa Maori politics. More>>

ALSO:

Private Provision: First Social Bond To Focus On Mental Health

New Zealand’s first social bond will help around 1700 people with mental illness into work, Finance Minister Steven Joyce and Social Investment Minister Amy Adams say. More>>

ALSO:

Immigration: Short Reprieve For Nine Indian Students

A temporary hold on deportations of nine Indian students is a step in the right direction but the Government urgently needs to implement safeguards to stop further injustices to more international students, the Green Party says. More>>

EARLIER:


Megaupload Case: High Court Rules Dotcom, Co-Accused Eligible For Extradion

Internet entrepreneur Kim Dotcom and his three co-accused are eligible for extradition to the United States, New Zealand's High Court ruled... Justice Murray Gilbert upheld a decision by the District Court that there were grounds for Dotcom, Mathias Ortmann, Bram van der Kolk and Finn Batato to be extradited. More>>

ALSO:

PREVIOUSLY:

Port Hills Fire: Midday Update, Monday 20 February

• 9 homes destroyed
• 2 homes with partial damage. Damage includes things like cracked windows, heat damage.
• 3 properties with damage to other external structures e.g sheds or outbuildings More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news