Hello friends and family
Life is so busy at present! On Sunday we had Sniper the Yellow-eyed penguin detector dog up to search beaches for us. It was a magical day and we found all the penguins that we knew to be there so that was wonderful.
On Monday we did the monitoring rounds and sorted out some of our new calendars to put with other people to sell. I spent the afternoon preparing for the scheduled power outage on Tuesday that was then deferred to Thursday. On Tuesday Robbie arrived with a small hothouse which he delivered, set up and installed. Thank you, Robbie!
After a treatment round on Wednesday morning I went to Oamaru with Jan and we delivered calendars, caught up with Marian and attended an event hosted by the local chapter of rural women that featured the first female president of Federated Farmers. She was inspirational, and I am so glad I got away from penguin shit and joined normal people. We socialised with some McIlraith in-laws of a dear friend of mine.
On Thursday we found more sick chicks and 2 more dead ones. Sad. Thank goodness the rest are still alive! On Friday we reached peak treatment with 29 individual chicks needing antibiotics. For 14 0f them it was their last dose, so we are over the hump. Chicks in the last nest started pipping too, which is wonderful.
Saturday was a busy one too! In the morning Hiltrun and I did the rounds and found another 6 sick chicks. This brings the proportion of treated chicks up to 72% so it is as bad as last season. Our productivity is now at 1.4 – it needs to stay over 1.1 for the penguins to be replacing themselves. In the afternoon, Marian and I did the AFB check for the bees. She got stung 3 times and me twice – it was a bit cold and the bees were grumpy. Thank goodness and Marian that it is done for the season.
The media has been interesting this week too. The ODT reported the YEPT as finding the rate of population decrease is slowing which is of little consolation to us as diphtheria is rampant again and little is being done to treat it. TVNZ 1 reported that the penguins will be extinct on mainland NZ in 10 -20 years as the numbers continue to plummet. We can only hope that more awareness brings more resources.
Have a great week!