Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Save the Whitebait (fritter)

14 August 2008

Save the Whitebait (fritter)

On the eve of the whitebait season, the Green Party is calling on farmers, councils and the Government to protect whitebait habitat from the impacts of livestock and industry.

Research from the University of Canterbury, released today, found that whitebait spawning habitat is under increasing pressure - particularly from farming and industrial activities.

"The whitebait tradition is dear to most New Zealanders, as is the delicious whitebait fritter. But this tradition is increasingly more difficult to secure, as we experienced during last year's meagre season," Green Party Co-leader Russel Norman says.

"The Department of Conservation said today they are deeply concerned at not finding any adult galaxiids (whitebait) in streams with historical records of having them. Some of these species have now been listed as threatened.

"This evidence confirms what the Green Party has long been saying - that local authorities, farmers and the Government must start protecting waterways. Planting along streams and keeping cattle out of them is vital to the survival of the species that make up the whitebait catch.

"The West Coast, famous for Whitebait, has seen massive dairying conversions in the last few years. Too frequently, this has been to the detriment of the local environment, as some farmers choose to put profit ahead of all else.

"This research also shows that smaller streams are vital for the whitebait species. Yet smaller streams are not included in the Clean Streams Accord. Even those farmers who are doing their best by the accord may be contributing to smaller streams becoming unsuitable for whitebait.

"On the West Coast, it is not uncommon to see cattle wandering through streams and on the banks of rivers - the very places that native whitebait spawn in. The main diary cooperative - Westland Milk Products - has not even joined the Clean Streams Accord," Dr Norman says.

"For New Zealanders to continue enjoying whitebait, and for the survival of the species, it is time for the few irresponsible farmers to start considering more than just their bottom line.

"We all use waterways - for fishing, swimming and drinking. Having them full of animal effluent doesn't do any one - least of all the humble whitebait - any favours."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election