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A 48-year-old drunken
Greymouth man was arrested on
Friday night after causing a stir at
McDonald’s restaurant. Police said
the man was mumbling and yelling.
He was quickly taken into custody
and trespassed from the premises.
Two trampers spent last night
camped in the Gunn River area,
south of Whataroa, after they
became ‘bluffed’ by high cliffs.
Senior constable Mike Tinnelly,
of Greymouth police, said the
Lakes Rescue Helicopter attempted
to get the pair out yesterday but
was hindered by low cloud. “ They
returned this morning and safely
rescued the two men, who were fine,
apart from being cold and wet,” Mr
A skirmish between two men
outside the Greymouth Star in
Mackay Street about 2.40am
yesterday resulted in one of the men
being shoved through the plate glass
window in the press room. Police
are still investigating.
Rain developing in morning
She is the world’s crankiest cat
with a permanent scowl that has
inspired a best-selling series of
books and a movie. But even the
news that she has amassed a £64
million fortune has not been enough
to put a smile on the face of internet
sensation Grumpy Cat — real name
Tardar Sauce. The feline, who shot
to fame two years ago in a You Tube
video that got 15.7 million views,
has earned more than Hollywood
stars Nicole Kidman, Cameron
Diaz and Matthew McConaughey.
Owner Tabatha Bundesen from
Morristown, Arizona, said the two-
year-old moggy is “unstoppable”.
— Daily Mail
A 1080 poison drop that
polarised the Kumara community
and pest controllers in 2008, is
back on the cards — and this
time the West Coast Wilderness
Trail is right in the potential
Six years ago, the poison drop
spawned a number of protests.
Opponents camped out in the
Taipo Valley, and a protest was
held outside the Department of
Conservation office in Hokitika.
Sixteen letters containing 1080
were mailed to organisations all
over New Zealand, including
DOC and the West Coast
Last week a number of Kumara
residents met with Ospri
(formerly the Animal Health
Board), and the drop looks likely
to occur again next winter.
“P lanning for the 2015
Waimea-Kawhaka operation is
at a very early stage. Thursday ’s
meeting was only the first step in
the consultation process,” Ospri
said in a brief statement this
It did not answer questions on
whether ground control could be
done in some of the zone.
Anti-1080 protester Nicky
Calcott, of Kumara, was at the
meeting and said she understood
the plan was to use aerial 1080,
including over parts of the
Her main concern was the dust
which “can travel up to 3km”.
She also wants to know why
ground control could not be used
closer to Kumara and the cycle
“They are only giving people
probably a 1km buffer zone.
And it’s all accessible by ground
control,” Ms Calcott said.
She was less concerned about
the town water supply, which
she understood came from
underground aquifers, while the
Kapitea Reser voir was just for
However, the cycle trail, which
at one point follows the reser voir,
would also be in the drop zone.
“There are so many entrances
and exits, it will be hard to cover
with (warning) signs. Everyone
walks their dog around there.
There won’t be anywhere to
walk without fear of them being
poisoned,” Ms Calcott said.
Protesters have asked for a 5km
exclusion zone around walking
and cycling tracks, reser voirs and
water races, and residential areas
of Kumara and Dillmanstown.
Fly fishing guide Peter Carty decided
to tag along on a fellow guide’s fly
fishing trip on the Mokihinui River
last Monday, only to get caught in an
aerial 1080 drop.
Mr Carty said he, fellow guide Tony
Entwhistle and his customer had
been having a great day. They were
getting some good catches along the
southern branch of the Mokihinui
River when they realised they were in
the midst of a 1080 drop. It took them
a while to realise what the helicopter
above them was doing.
“ We thought they might have been
filming an episode of MASH,” Mr
Neither they, nor the helicopter
pilot who had dropped them into
the area, had been informed a drop
was taking place that day. Both they
and the pilot, who flew guides and
tourists into the area, had concessions
to operate there.
He understood all concession
holders were supposed to be informed
when a 1080-drop was occurring.
He said they were not too worried
while the chopper was dropping
the pellets downstream, but when it
started coming straight for them they
He and Mr Entwhistle carried a
fluorescent yellow or orange flag
to wave down their chopper at the
end of a trip. They used the flags to
signal the chopper dropping 1080, to
prevent it from dropping the poison
on top of them.
Mr Carty said the pilot must have
seen them, because it diverted around
their location. However, it did not
cease the operation in the area
Tb Free NZ northern South
Island programme manager Matt
Hickson said the pilot did not see the
fishermen, so no action was taken.
He confirmed they were inside the
operational area of the Mokihinui
All concession holders should have
been notified by the Department
of Conser vation via e-mail on
November 27, he said.
If the pilot had seen them and it
was safe to land, he or she would have
done so, and informed the fishermen
of the operation. If unable to land, the
pilot would report back to the aerial-
co-ordinator who would determine
if they could have been contacted by
ground staff. If that was not possible,
an exclusion zone would be applied to
the area, Mr Hickson said.
Once the fishermen had moved
along the river, they began to find
1080 pellets along the riverbanks and,
in some cases, floating in the river
‘It ’s not a nice experience,” Mr
Carty said. He was glad none hit him.
He said there were a lot of small
1080 particles around the riverbed
and he and his colleagues became
concerned they might be breathing in
The chopper dropping the 1080 was
so high above the ground it had little
control over where the bait went,
especially as it was a reasonably windy
“ We found it all through the river.”
The customer, a top litigation
attorney in L os Angeles, knew
nothing about 1080. When told about
it, he said that if this were the United
States, there would be lawsuits.
Mr Carty said 1080 was not a nice
thing for tourists to encounter.
“It ’s not a very good look when
we’re trying to portray a clean green,
not 1080-green, image.”
Fishing party caught up in Buller 1080 poison drop
PICTURE: Lisa Rangi
Minnie Mouse was among the many colourful characters out and about for the Greymouth Christmas parade, on Saturday afternoon. The streets were packed
with families as the parade snaked its way through the central business district, and was met with squeals of delight from excited children.
More photos, p5.
Chinese tourism spending skyrockets
Spending by Chinese tourists has
skyrocketed to $22 million in Westland,
$2 million in Greymouth and $1 million
in Buller, according to the Ministry of
Business, Innovation and Employment.
Last year, Chinese spending was $15m
in Westland, $1m in Grey and nothing
Tourism West Coast chief executive
Jim Little said there had been a 161%
overall increase in the past two years —
from $8m in 2012 to $17m in 2013, and
$25m in 2014, with most of the increase
The spending figures came from credit
cards and eftpos use, without taking into
account China Union Pay — the main
credit card — or cash transactions.
“ I’d just about double that figure,” he
Most of the money went on
accommodation, retailing such as jade
or supermarkets, and petrol.
In Greymouth, it was mostly for
“They don’t spend much on anything
else. By the time they get here
(Greymouth), to the time they leave,
everything is closed. ”
Mr Little said Chinese tourists often
travelled by bus, arriving late afternoon.
Usually they would have an early meal
and then “go out on the town”, but could
not do that in Greymouth.
Overall, domestic and international
tourist spending on the West Coast
over the 12 months from March 2013
to March 2014 increased from $285m
The figures also showed that
Westport ’s biggest overall tourism
spending area was fuel, at $19m, ahead
of accommodation at $12m.
“People are visiting Westport, but they
are not staying,” Mr Little said.
Accommodation spending in Buller
had dropped from a high of $14m in
both 2011 and 2012.
In Grey, $28m was spent on fuel and
$13m on accommodation.
Moana residents have formed a
Save O ur Church committee to
try to secure the future of the last
church in the town, overlooking
Lake Brunner. The Nelson
Anglican Diocese is looking at
the future of the church. At a
public meeting on Saturday, Geoff
Bromley was elected chairman and
Judi Mears secretary. Mr Bromley
said the meeting was attended
by “a concerned and determined
group of residents, property and
business owners”. The committee
will liaise with the diocese “in the
hope of gaining a grace period
to further investigate options for
the community in regards to the
church and its imminent sale by
the Nelson diocese”.
Moana fights for church
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