War on weeds

Pest weeds are often the ones that produce thousands of tiny seeds borne on the wind or dropped by birds. Some seem to be able to thrive under any conditions, even surviving digging out or spraying with weed killer. Many weeds are garden escapees that...... Read More

Environment - Eve of destruction

2020 started with an existential bang. Catastrophic bushfires, drought, international undiplomatic brinkmanship and now COVID-19. It’s felt like we’ve ticked off the full apocalyptic list. The yellow smoke-filled skies in January made us realise...... Read More

Watch out for robins

After a long hot summer I’m looking forward to some cooler weather and a bit of rain. I’m not alone in this. A lot of our birds are finding pickings a bit thin and the Wenderholm hillsides are dotted with browning taraire trees, which struggle...... Read More

Internet satellites could fill the skies

One of the most common questions I recently get from those on the Coast is: “what are those Starlink train satellites we see at night?” If you go out in the early evening, just after sunset, you may look up and see a number of lights travelling...... Read More

Environment - Making dogs citizens

Professor Kevin Stafford is a vet who studies animal behaviour, including conflicts between animal and human endeavours. He has particular expertise in the welfare of dogs. He poses the question, what does a dog want? Despite living with humans for around...... Read More

Hihi next on SOSSI’s list

As you may have heard there has been another “translocation of ‘Kiwis’” to the open sanctuary, namely the people evacuated from Wuhan who are being quarantined on the Defence Force land. There is no access in or out of there,...... Read More

TOSSI - Influencing the influential

First-timers to Tāwharanui generally discover the pest-free open sanctuary by themselves, but when a VIP goes bush – TOSSI likes to roll out the red whāriki. So when Auckland Mayor Phil Goff visited the park in the middle of the summer holidays,...... Read More

Is Betelgeuse about to go Supernova?

If you go out at night in the summer and look towards the north, you will see a recognisable constellation: Orion. Some people know it as ‘The Pot’. Just below the pot and to the right you will notice a very bright, orange-red star, called...... Read More

Time travel in Tiri

I recently spent a night at Tiritiri Matangi Island. Even though it’s less than four-kilometres from the Whangaparaoa Peninsula and 30km from central Auckland, a visit, especially overnight, is like stepping back in time to our primordial past...... Read More

Keeping our cool

There are growing majorities across most countries that consider global warming is occurring and is due to human activity. I hope to assure readers that the data, trends and recommendations invoked by the climate scientists have credibility. Given the...... Read More