by Carol Sawyer via Roger Childs
It has come to my notice, from a usually reliable source, that at least two
helicopters were working for the Department of Conservation last weekend carrying out the Tahr cull ( the one that Eugenie Sage said would not now be carried out until next winter ) in the designated Tahr cull area that was
organised prior to the fatal Wanaka helicopter accident on 20 October, 2018.
One helicopter flew out of Manapouri, I’m told, and a second involved is
The Dept of Conservation is crying out for more money, and yet the helicopter from Manapouri would have had a three hour return trip, I’m told, at a cost of at least $1,500 per hour — just to position it for the Tahr cull.
There are several helicopters closer that could have been used instead.
The helicopter from Manapouri was carrying a DoC biodiversity officer to do the shooting.
The Tahr are calving now. I’m informed the babies would probably not have been seen, as they are “planted” for the first two weeks of life, in a similar manner to deer — with Mum coming back to feed them. They will have been left to die of cold and starvation.
I have also heard via a second source, a shocked helicopter owner, that DoC are shooting the nanny Tahr in the guts so they go away and die invisibly in the bush, presumably in severe pain. If they were visible their skeletons would be visible for several years. This way they are hidden from public view. I SO hope this is not true ! ( Not that they are likely to confirm it, if they have. )