Home' Advocate Communications : Fiordland Advocate 14 March 2013 Contents LOCAL NEWS
Page 4 | 14 March, 2013
Mr Tustin has been building
kea-proof” housing for the
cameras which will also make
them easier to mount on trees.
The new cameras are a vast
improvement on the existing
models with longer battery life
and capacity to hold a far greater
number of images meaning they
won’t have to be serviced so
They can also take quick bursts
of photos rather than single shots
and have longer trigger distances
able to capture movement up to
But perhaps the most significant
change is the use of “black flash”
– an infra-red flash with nothing
showing on the camera to startle
the animal, something that can
potentially lead to trail wariness.
Remote cameras were first
used in the moose hunt back in
1994 when Natural History New
Zealand built some specially for
the purpose. They were extremely
susceptible to the extreme
Fiordland weather and were
powered by four car batteries.
Despite the cumbersome and
fickle nature of the set-up, it’s
ironic that this is the only camera
to date to have ever captured
what is thought to be a moose.
Unfortunately the picture is too
blurry to convince sceptics and
even the believers want a more
Mr Tustin has spent a lifetime
studying the animals, meticulously
recording browse sites, droppings,
hoofprints, cast antlers and even
hair that DNA proved was from a
moose, but he has yet to see one
in the wild. Based on his research,
he estimates that Fiordland is
home to a moose population of
between 20 and 40 but said the
solitary nature of the animal,
combined with its huge home
range and the vastness of the
Fiordland bush made spotting one
challenging. There were areas,
such as Herrick Creek, where lots
of evidence had been recorded of
moose passing through at least
once a year but there were no
“resident” moose there, he said.
But while the new equipment
posed all sorts of exciting
possibilities, Mr Tustin said the
more immediate anticipation
would come when sorting through
the 1500-or so shots captured
on the old cameras to be brought
“In my own lifetime I want to sort
this out,” he said of his quest.
“I’d be very happy with a photo
because that would stir the
debate about where this animal
features in the big scheme of
things and how we look at it and
the challenges that places on
Although an introduced species
that grazed on native flora, it
would be hard to argue that it
posed a significant impact to the
natural environment, especially
considering that it has been
considered extinct for decades.
“You don’t get more insignificant
than that,” he said.
Hi-tech help in moose hunt
(Continued from Page 1)
Te Anau firefighters were quick
to respond to a fire call at Te
Anau School on Monday evening,
preventing a vegetation fire from
getting out of hand.
Smoke was discovered coming
from a hedge at the Gunn Street
entrance to the school just before
Principal Rob Rush said the fire
quickly spread up the hedge then
went down again, moving along
the grass verge before leaping
up the hedge again. Sections of
the wooden boundary fence were
It’s unclear what caused the fire
but a discarded cigarette butt from
a passerby on Gunn Street was a
likely scenario, Mr Rush said.
The fire demonstrated just how dry
vegetation was around Fiordland
at the moment and how quickly
fire could spread, he said.
Quick response to hedge fire
A burnt section of fence is doused in water while other firefighters keep an eye
on the smouldering hedge.
on selected products for a limited time
First Race 11.45am
at the Winton Central Southland Raceway.
Marshall Industries supporting the Royal New
Zealand Foundation of the Blind - RNZFB Guide Dogs
In conjunction with the Winton Harness Racing Club
CHARITY RACE DAY
FAMILY DAY OUT
Saturday, 16 March, 2013
Don't miss out, come and see us at Marshall Industries
prior to the event where we can give you a free quote.
Terms and Conditions apply.
Fun, action and atmosphere for the whole family!
Kids, come and check out the fun rides, mini
jeeps, bouncy castles, model aeroplane
demonstration plus birdcage activities with
free helicopter ride prizes! Also Helicopter
Rides with The Helicopter Line and RNZFB
Guide Dog Puppies!
Mum and Dad enjoy an afternoon of harness racing!
A New Residential Coloursteel Roof Auction,
with the proceeds going to RNZFB Guide Dogs.
Saturday 16th March
from 5pm onwards
Saturday 16th March
from 5pm onwards
A sliders evening hosted by Greg Hay of
$12 menu Featuring Bluff Oysters,
Blue Cod and Whitebait
End of Summer Celebration
at the Black Dog Bar
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