Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Last chance to save Māui dolphins

Last chance to save Māui dolphins

The Government’s proposed rescue plan must be strengthened because it is the last chance to save Māui dolphins from extinction and secure the future for Hector’s dolphins, Forest & Bird says.

Submissions close tomorrow for the Ministry of Conservation and Fisheries New Zealand’s Hector’s and Māui dolphin Threat Management Plan consultation.

Forest and Bird’s submission welcomes many of the proposals to enhance protections for both the Māui and Hector’s sub-species, Forest & Bird Marine Conservation Advocate Anton van Helden says. But he adds the proposals fall short of securing the future for these rare and beautiful animals found nowhere else in the world.

“There are only around 60 Māui dolphins over a year old left in the world. Every single one counts and threats created by humans are driving them towards extinction,” Mr van Helden says.

“We need to tackle every one of those threats and half measures won’t save Māui dolphins. Set net and trawl fishing and dangers related to oil, gas and minerals exploration and mining are known threats that we can eliminate.

“Small local populations of Hector’s dolphins are also in danger of disappearing and we must protect these to safeguard the future of the overall population.”

Forest & Bird wants only dolphin-friendly fishing methods to be allowed in their habitat. This means switching from commercial and recreational set net fishing and commercial trawl fishing throughout the range of Māui and Hector’s dolphins in waters out to a depth of 100 metres.

Methods such as long-lining, potting and purse seine would still be among those available to fishers.

“Zero bycatch is the only acceptable goal for both Māui and Hector’s dolphins. Forest & Bird realises this will cause disruption to some fishers and believes the government should provide financial and practical help for those affected.”

Seismic surveys and other activities related to oil, gas and other marine mining activities have no place in the dolphins’ habitat, Forest & Bird submitted. While the management plan proposals include expanding marine mammal sanctuaries, they also allow exemptions for 21 existing permit holders in Māui dolphin habitat until 2046.

“Māui dolphins could be extinct before the permits expire,” Mr van Helden says.

Seismic surveying activities are controlled by the 2013 Code of Conduct but this falls well short of best practice and is no longer fit for purpose based on the latest science.

The threat posed by toxoplasmosis, a disease spread by cat faeces washed into the ocean, is not well understood and Forest & Bird supports a proposed research programme to better understand its impact and ways to combat it.

Research shows the disease kills dolphins with weakened immune systems. We must reduce the human impacts that degrade their environment, including fishing, mining, pollution, and the effects of climate change.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Mishandling Of The Alleged Sexual Assault

The focus of Labour’s alleged sexual assault scandal has now shifted from the party organisation to the Beehive... This is now a crisis of Beehive management and response, not something occurring at a distance within the party organisation.

Presumably, the QC appointed to clarify what happened will eventually shed light on key issues. Such as: on what date prior to the publication of the original Spinoff article did the party hierarchy/PM’s office/PM’s press secretary realise they were dealing with a sexual assault allegation, and what did they do about it at that point? More>>

 

'History Rectified': Rua Kēnana To Be Pardoned

An official pardon for Tūhoe prophet and leader Rua Kēnana is one step closer after the Te Pire kia Unuhia te Hara kai Runga i a Rua Kēnana: Rua Kēnana Pardon Bill was read in Parliament for the first time today. More>>

ALSO:

Mental Health: Initial Mental Health And Wellbeing Commission Appointed

The Government has announced details of the initial Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission which will play a key role in driving better mental health in New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

people outside the meeting house at WaitangiEducation: NZ History To Be Taught In All Schools

“We have listened carefully to the growing calls from New Zealanders to know more about our own history and identity. With this in mind it makes sense for the National Curriculum to make clear the expectation that our history is part of the local curriculum and marau ā kura in every school and kura,” Jacinda Ardern said. More>>

ALSO:

Sexual Assault Claims Mishandled: Labour Party President Resigns

Jacinda Ardern: “This morning I was provided some of the correspondence from complainants written to the party several months ago. It confirms that the allegations made were extremely serious, that the process caused complainants additional distress, and that ultimately, in my view, the party was never equipped to appropriately deal with the issue…" More>>

ALSO:

Budget Process: Wellbeing To Be Enshrined In Law

Legislation has been introduced in Parliament to ensure every Government considers the wellbeing of New Zealanders when creating future budgets. More>>

National In China: Bridges Praises CCP, Meets Law Enforcement Head

A recent trip to China has raised questions over who the Opposition leader Simon Bridges met with and why... Anne-Marie Brady, a Canterbury University professor and expert on Chinese politics, has described Guo Shengkun as the leader of the Chinese secret police. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The SIS/GCSB’s Compliance With Torture

Torture is a crime under international law. New Zealand has signed (a) the UN convention against torture and (b) formal agreements about how armed conflict should be conducted. That’s the legal backdrop to the fascinating report released this week by the SIS Inspector-General.

ALSO:

New Strategy: Suicide Prevention Office To Drive Prevention Action

The Government has announced a Suicide Prevention Office will be established to coordinate action already underway to reduce New Zealand’s historically high rate of suicide. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels