Forest & Bird supports Save Kennedy Point (SKP) and others who have filed an injunction and judicial review aimed at halting marina construction activity on Waiheke Island, until Kennedy Point Boat Harbour Limited (KPBL) has properly set out how they will ensure the safety of the resident penguin colony.
“Blue penguins are a taonga species, protected under the Wildlife Act, and are in decline nationally. Experts agree that KPBL has not yet provided plans which will sufficiently protect the local penguins. It’s clear Auckland Council hasn’t done due diligence on this important species when they approved KPBL’s construction management plan,” says Forest & Bird’s Auckland Regional Manager, Lissy Fehnker-Heather.
“Forest & Bird is also concerned the Department of Conservation (DOC) has told KPBL they don’t need a wildlife permit, despite little blue penguins being a protected species under the Wildlife Act."
“The Wildlife Act protects little blue penguins and their nests from disturbance. We feel it is highly likely that moving the rocks which are their home will disturb them, especially as they may be in molt and at risk from water saturation and predators.”
“Forest & Bird’s view is that DOC and Auckland Council have simply rubber-stamped KPBL’s management plan.”
“Forest & Bird’s immediate concern is the welfare of the little blue penguins, and until the issues around KPM’s penguin management plan are resolved and the Wildlife Act complied with, we have no confidence the penguins’ safety is guaranteed during the marina’s construction.”
Forest & Bird is a proud part of the Waiheke community, and is committed to continuing working with iwi, mana whenua, the wider Waiheke community, and other environmental groups to make sure the wildlife and ecosystems of the Hauraki Gulf and Waiheke Island are protected.