Kapi-Mana News : July 16th 2013
BEST COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR MEDIA AWARDS, 2013 TUESDAY, JULY 16, 2013 PORIRUA CITY & TAWA www.kapimananews.co.nz INSIDE: OPINION 10 | KAPA HAKA 14 | FILM REVIEW 19 | PARENT TALK 32 | SPORT 46-48 Brash FACE-OFF: zeroing in Canada Canada geese and former Porirua mayor Jenny Brash are to do battle next January. ON geese UNWANTED GIFTS Canada geese were introduced to New Zealand early in the 20th century as a gift from United States president Theodore Roosevelt. In 2011 the geese were reclassified from game birds to pests and Federated Farmers was given a $100,000 government grant to cull them. In 2012, 12,000 Canada geese were bludgeoned with clubs and baseball bats in a controversial Canterbury cull. Rotting carcasses were left floating in Lake Ellesmere, raising fears of waterway pollution. In 2011, 18,000 geese were clubbed in North Otago with a further 4000 eliminated in 2012. Geese that escaped clubbing were later shot at from helicopters. Ravenous Canada geese excreting tonnes of waste into Pauata- hanui Inlet are in the sights of former Pori- rua mayor Jenny Brash who is organising a cull of the birds next January. Ms Brash plans to capture about 70 birds while they are moulting at Lane s Flat. The net- ted birds would be removed and likely gassed or disposed in another humane way, she said. The plan had been approved by Lane s Flat owners, the New Zea- land Transport Agency, she said. Canada geese are a pest so can be hunted at any time without a game licence. In the 1990s, Ms Brash worked in pest eradication for the Depart- ment of Conservation and led a controversial cull of Kaimanawa horses. It didn t pay to be sentimental about pest species, she said. Nobody wants to kill birds but working in DOC -- I was in charge of animal control -- you get quite hardened to killing these pests. Replanting the inlet shoreline with natives was pointless while the geese ate the seedlings, she said. Canada geese had been breed- ing at the inlet for three years and fed on native harbourside plants and surrounding pasture, said a report prepared by Robin Chester- field, head of the inlet s Forest & Bird group. The geese descend in droves on the reserve each day. The pond shoreline native vegetation is damaged and the pond water and tracks received a large amount of droppings, Mr Chesterfield said. Eachbirdcandouptoakiloof droppings a day, which fouls waterways and becomes a health hazard on land. Addling eggs, killing goslings and shooting at birds had been tried without success by Forest & Bird members, Mr Chesterfield said. Co-ordination [with] landowners [and] recreational shooters and culling by netting during the moult could substan- tially control the numbers before they are out of control as at Lake Wairarapa, he said. Ms Brash agreed geese numbers were poised to explode. Give them another couple of years and they re going to be really devastating, she said. We were wrong, says council By ANDREA O'NEIL Costs for fixing Maraeroa School s flooding problem could fall on ratepayers after Porirua City Council admitted it approved a problematic pipe connection in Cannons Creek. After saying the Ministry of Education illegally connected Porirua College s stormwater pipe to Driver Cres, the council dis- covered last week that the con- nection was consented in 2008. It now acknowledges a 400-millimetre pipe from Porirua College was allowed to be con- nected to the city s 250-millimetre pipe. It was assumed that the net- work would cope with that [vol- ume of water], a council spokes- woman said last week. Maraeroa School has flooded several times a year since 2011, causing $180,000 worth of damage for the education ministry and putting staff and student health in danger. Council and ministry staff met last week to discuss who was liable for the resulting floods in Driver Cres. A decision should be made within a fortnight, the spokeswoman said. Stormwater from Driver Cres flows to Porirua Stream via pipes under dozens of properties in Porirua East, council waste and water manager Chris Hopman told Kapi-Mana News last month. Widening that pipe could cost millions, he said. Porirua College has a second pipe flowing to Cannons Creek Lake. It could be widened at a cost of $450,000, Mr Hopman said. Apologies had been made for the council s false accusation, council chief executive Gary Simp- son said. The council regrets the error and has apologised to the Ministry of Education and Porirua College for any damage to their repu- tation. Until 2010, private connections to the city network were not recorded by the council, he said. Since then a model has been drawn of Porirua s stormwater pipes, but council officers still deemed the college connection illegal last month. When the council approved the larger body of works during the redevelopment at the college, they gave consent for all connections applied for by the ministry, Mr Simpson said. It is clear there are drainage issues at [Porirua] College and in the local area that also affect Maraeroa School. The ministry and Porirua City Council have committed to working together urgently to identify the problems and provide solutions.
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