Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Hundreds of native bats discovered in new colony

Forest & Bird discovers hundreds of native bats in new colony

Forest & Bird is thrilled that a large colony of endangered South Island long-tailed bats has been discovered during a January survey on D’Urville Island, in the Marlborough Sounds.

The D’Urville population is estimated to number in the hundreds.

The colony was discovered by a Forest & Bird survey team during the fifth and final year of surveys, initiated by Forest & Bird Top of the South Field Officer Debs Martin, alongside bat scientist Dr Brian Lloyd.

“This find is fantastic news,” says Ms Martin. “It means that D’Urville Island is even more important to New Zealand’s natural heritage than we thought.”

Only 10 colonies of long-tailed bats are known to remain on the South Island mainland, with total numbers less than 5000 - and declining.

“D’Urville Island is the fifth largest island in New Zealand. One third of it is public conservation land. It is free of possums and ship rats, which increases the long-tailed bat’s chances of survival. Except for a small colony on Stewart Island, the D’Urville group is the only one known to be living on an offshore island. This find dramatically increases the chances of saving the species from extinction," says Ms Martin. “It was predicted that the South Island long-tailed bat would become extinct within 50 years. But this find may well alter that.

"Our next step will be to work with the Department of Conservation, Ngati Koata and local landowners to monitor the bats and ensure the island remains a safe haven for these animals. Protecting the quality of the island’s remaining forests and not allowing any new predator species to establish themselves on the island is now vital.”

The D’Urville colony was found thanks to the late Colin Iles, whose estate funded the final year of bat surveys.

“Colin was a gentle and compassionate man who was keen to see that his bequest benefited conservation in New Zealand,” says Ms Martin. “This surely is a legacy to be proud of. We are ever grateful to Colin for his generosity.”

One species of native bat – the greater short-tailed bat –became extinct in 1965 from predation by ship rats. Another species of short-tailed bat survives, but in low numbers. Forest & Bird surveys have failed to find any surviving populations of short-tailed bats at the top of the South Island, including in places where it is known historically to have lived.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Final Frontier: Rocket Lab And NASA Sign Commercial Space Launch Agreement

Rocket Lab has signed a Commercial Space Launch Act Agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The agreement enables Rocket Lab to use NASA resources - including personnel, facilities and equipment - for launch and reentry efforts. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Wheeler Downplays Scope For ‘Large’ Rates Fall

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler says some market commentators are predicting further declines in interest rates that would only make sense for an economy in recession, although some easing is likely to be needed to maintain New Zealand’s economic growth. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha Dam: Consent Conditions Could Mean Reduced Intensity

Legal advice sought by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council on the Ruataniwha Dam consent conditions has confirmed that farmers who sign up to take water from the dam could be required to reduce the intensity of their farming operation to meet the catchment’s strict nitrogen limit. More>>

Health And Safety: Bill Now Sees Rules Relaxed For Small Businesses

Health and safety law reform sparked by the Pike River coalmine disaster has been reported back from the industrial relations select committee with weakened requirements on small businesses to appoint health and safety representatives and committees. More>>

ALSO:

Bearing Fruit: Annual Fruit Exports Hit $2 Billion For First Time

The value of fruit exported rose 20 percent (up $330 million) for the June 2015 year when compared with the year ended June 2014. Both higher prices and a greater quantity of exports (up 9.0 percent) contributed to the overall rise. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news