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News / Frustration As Construction Next To Endangered Penguins Continues

Frustration As Construction Next To Endangered Penguins Continues

Frustration As Construction Next To Endangered Penguins Continues

Posted June 11, 2021
Environmental

Media Release: Forest & Bird

Forest & Bird has written to Auckland Council for the second time in a week asking that construction work next to a kororā little blue penguin colony on Waiheke Island stop, after getting footage showing construction work next to active penguin sites.

“When I went to Pūtiki Bay yesterday contractors were driving piles into the seabed about two metres away from kororā nests,” says Forest & Bird’s Auckland Regional Manager, Lissy Fehnker-Heather. “Anybody can see that this work is incredibly loud and disruptive.”

On Friday 4 June, Forest & Bird wrote to Auckland Council asking that works at the site stop until an appropriate kororā management plan is developed. There has been no response from Auckland Council and works at the site continue.

“We are incredibly disappointed with this situation. The resource consent for this project requires that there must be an kororā management plan. The original plan was deemed inadequate not only by community groups and ourselves, but also by Kennedy Point Boat Harbour Limited’s (KPBL) new ecologist who stated that more work could have been done on this plan and required further improvements.

“The plan is currently being revised but is yet to be approved by Auckland Council, so work should stop,” says Forest & Bird’s Auckland Regional Manager, Lissy Fehnker-Heather.

“Any argument that this is not construction activity and therefore does not need to wait for a revised kororā plan is dismissible. If piles are being driven into the seabed to support the concrete structure, it clearly should be classed as construction of the marina.”

“New Zealand is attempting to turn around a biodiversity crisis, with 4,000 species at risk of extinction. Construction next to an easily disturbed and at-risk native species without a decent plan is outrageous.

“We urgently need Auckland Council to step up and play their part in protecting kororā.”

Photo: Forest & Bird - sediment plumes caused by construction