Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wet Day at Miranda

On Sunday I returned to Miranda for the talk on dotterels by John Dowding and a visit to the hides for the 'return of the birds'.

   John is an authority on NZ Dotterels and explained how although they have been doing well the future is not good due to funding cuts to DoC. There is a direct correlation between how they are managed to how well they increase their population. He also pointed out that most of the present population are found on the East coast and that Auckland’s East coast is the very area under threat of subdivision and competition with other activities.

 John also covered the Rena disaster. They  removed half of the population to the safety of  aviaries built nearby then waited until after the clean-up to return the birds. This is apparently a first on a world scale. Birds usually either being cleaned up after the event or relocated to other areas.
After Johns engaging talk I headed in the rain for the hides to see the many bird congregating on the shell banks.

With the poor light conditions the only photos I could take were of this plant called Batchelors buttons, Buttonweed,  Cotula coronopifolia growing behind the old hide on the waterlogged shell bank.  I am quite familiar with this plant as it grows on the margins of the  lagoon at Tuff Crater.