Top image: tracking SBBG on coastal Ashburton (image: Andrew Crossland)
Don’t forget, if you are planning to attend the braided rivers seminar this coming Wednesday, you must book.
If you have and already booked, you would have received an email on Saturday asking you to confirm. This is because we have received funding from Manawa Energy (big shout out to Ryan Kane) for catering morning and afternoon teas packed full of yummy goodies. As the deadline for catering has passed, numbers are limited to those already booked. Please confirm if you have not already done so, or send me a quick email cancelling, so that we can offer your place to those who have yet to book.
It is important to note that Membership to BRaid does not automatically assure entry.
I will send another newsletter later next week, with links to Wednesday’s presentations.
Understanding the movements of Southern black-backed gulls / karoro is an important part of designing a strategy to manage their vast numbers. Andrew Crossland (top image) did a reconnaissance of post-breeding flock distribution in the coastal Ashburton area, 20 March – 16 April 2022 around the Ashburton Hakatere. The report makes for fascinating and disturbing reading. Dark memories of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds, come to mind when I see some of the photos. You can read the full report here.
Looking forward to catching up with many of you this week.
Sonny Whitelaw email@example.com
- November last year, the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment published Space invaders: A review of how New Zealand manages weeds that threaten native ecosystems.
- ECan replied with this compelling submission.
- I’m not sure if this is still in the development phase, but do take the time to check out Landcare Research /Manaaki Whenua’s online environmental evidence database designed to improve your environmental decisions: “Environmental Evidence Aotearoa makes evidence for maintaining and enhancing New Zealand’s environment readily accessible for policymakers, practitioners and researchers. This proof-of-concept resource focuses on helping decision-makers enhance Aotearoa’s unique farmland biodiversity.”
- Higher range effort maps are now available for download from the NZ Bird Atlas eBird portal
- Another braided river about to be destroyed: The Minister of Conservation intends to allow a hydro-generation scheme on the Waitaha River, meaning Morgan Gorge will become an emaciated trickle for much of the year – NZ Geographic
- NZ Geographic Photographer of the Year competition closes 13 July. Let’s see if a braided river critter (bird, bat, bug, fish or plant) makes the finals!
- How animals perceive their world – The Atlantic
- Anyone who subscribes to daily news from the journal Nature, will be aware of their weekly ‘find Leif Leif Penguinson’ segment. Leif is a Rockhopper penguin, and his amazing journey began here. What’s this got to do with braided rivers? Absolutely nothing, but trying to find him hiding amongst these gulls should keep you occupied for a minute or two.
- I also couldn’t resist laughing at this gull-friendly (Larus tridactylus) high-rise apartment block in Berlevag, Norway (June 2022):
- Great research project being undertaken by Te Pūnaha Matatini – the meeting place of many faces – Aotearoa New Zealand’s Centre of Research Excellence for complex systems.
Braided rivers: The land the law forgot. “We have a strong understanding of physical forces that interact to shape braided rivers, although our models suggest our understanding might be waning in the face of climatic change. Yet our understanding of the legal, economic, cultural, and social factors that shape braided rivers’ ever-shifting bed, banks, and margins is almost non-existent.” Which is timely, considering the following:
- Chemke et al; The intensification of winter mid-latitude storm tracks in the Southern Hemisphere, Nature Climate Change 12, 553–557: Extreme weather events are happening 80 years ahead of schedule, with implications for the scale and frequency of braided rivers flooding.