Monday, 17 October 2011


Our mates in the VRWC have been joshing with us all day. There have been about 1200 birds killed by the RENA oil slick. Our mates argue that while it seems a lot its not big in the scheme of things. Maybe they are right - they normally are. However we do  think that DOC needs a big thumbs up for co-ordinating the effort to save the pandas of NZ bird world  - The Dotterel. Its a sisyphean task that requires passion and dogged determination in the face of insurmountable odds.

They are funny wee birds that hide on the shore line and put their nests in the silliest of places. The go for bloody miles to find a feed and when the chips are down they will abandon their chicks and its not like they have a big brood - nope they only have a couple  or three at best. 

In essence they wiggled their fluffy arses just enough to make a wee indent in the sand and squeeze out a couple or three bumnuts. But just above the high tide zone is the equivalent of gang riven  Farmers Crescent.  Its hell out there.  All manner of predators  lurk there from skua, stoats and the heavy feet of hairy legged trampers. So what happens if the eggs or chicks get killed? Well the dotterels are persistent - they go and wiggle there wee botties and do it all over again.

So they are as succesful as parents as Sonny Bill Williams would be at trying to maintain a hard on in a locked room with only Helen Clark for company.

We reckon Dotterel  are  winged Pandas because despite the fact that they are deliriously cute, these little feathered moths  that flit almost undetectable on the sandy shore line - need human support to exist. So New Zealand, is  in essence, providing state support for the useless dotterel parents. What do NZ'ers get in return? bugger all as you cant see the wee buggers as they only thing they are much good at is camouflage.  However they would stick out like the balls on a St Bernard against the oil stained sand. 

You see our mates reckon that we have  had a far greater impact on the country's bird population - killing over 40,000 muttonbirds singletoothedly over our lifetime. That is very true. We are of course very old  so its taken nearly half a century to reach that figure. So while we have dispatched a lot of oily birds to eat  - the  RENA's oily slick  hasn't really eaten a lot of birds. 

However, we think that what is really worth saving is the little blue penguin.. The wee pengys never fail to raise a smile either on land or at sea. Gentle wee buggers  - efficient hunters and good mums and dads.  And they apparently taste like crap. 

We like that in a bird.

and what is our favourite Seabird? This one of course-  

There is nothing that comes close to the grace of these birds and their amazing faces. 
They are welcome to come steal my fish anytime. 

No comments: