Protecting our ocean visitors

Press Release – Department of Conservation

Seaweek (3-11 March) is being celebrated on the Kapiti Coast this year with a clean-up of Paraparamu beach on Saturday 3 March from 10 until 12pm, organised by the Department of Conservation.24 February 2012

Protecting our ocean visitors

Seaweek (3-11 March) is being celebrated on the Kapiti Coast this year with a clean-up of Paraparamu beach on Saturday 3 March from 10 until 12pm, organised by the Department of Conservation.

“Kapiti Marine Reserve, on the Kapiti Coast, is seen as being nationally significant for providing recreation, education and having special ecological and scientific values. So we felt it was important to try and protect it from any rubbish on the nearby beach,” says DOC Kapiti Wellington Community Relations Ranger Wendy Newton.

“Every year, seals, penguins, fish, dolphins, whales, albatrosses and other birds mistakenly swallow rubbish thinking its food, then choke or become entangled in rope and plastics and drown”.

Kapiti Marine Reserve is not only a recreation play ground for people like kayakers, but for many marine species. There have been regular sightings of dolphins and orca in the reserve.

“We hope the beach clean-up will help keep Kapiti Marine Reserve, the playground of many special species free of rubbish that could cause them harm” says Ms Newton.

“We are always keen to hear from anyone who has spotted whales and dolphins on the Kapiti Coast as we collect data to help us understand more about marine mammals in our waters”.

To join in the beach clean-up and find out more about the Kapiti Marine Reserve. Please come along on Saturday 3rd March 2012 10 – 12pm Meet on the beach at 10:00am behind the Kapiti Boat Club, 1 Manly Street, Paraparaumu Beach. Gloves and rubbish bags will be provided. Contact: Wendy Newton wnewton@doc.govt.nz for further information

Details of Seaweek and events being held throughout the week of 3rd -11th March can be found at: www.seaweek.org.nz

To find out more on how you can help with marine mammal sightings visit: http://www.doc.govt.nz/conservation/native-animals/marine-mammals/

To report an injured marine mammal please call the 0800 DOCHOT line (0800 36 24 68).

ENDS

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