By Suvi van Smit, Partnerships Ranger based in Westport
The West Coast Blue Penguin Trust have been busy building nesting boxes for the local population of little blue penguins/kororā.
Timber and materials were kindly donated by the local Mitre 10 in Westport during Conservation Week and the Buller conservation volunteers group spent a day helping to build the new nesting boxes.
These volunteers are a group set up by DOC. They meet at DOC’s Northern West Coast District Office every fortnight and go out with a DOC ranger to do a variety of work for the day—planting, helping community groups, track maintenance, historic maintenance and an array of other jobs.
The volunteers helped to build ten nesting boxes. The hope is that baby penguins hatch in the boxes and are given a measure of protection against predators.
The boxes were placed out in a penguin colony at Charleston on the West Coast to create penguin homes for when the little blue penguins are nesting. The West Coast Blue Penguin Trust monitors the boxes throughout the year.
It was a great day had by all, bringing together a wonderful partnership between the community, business, volunteers and DOC staff.