Kaipupu sanctuary opening in new year

Last updated 15:43 11/12/2012

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Excitement is mounting as the work on Kaipupu progresses to a grand finale: An official opening early in the new year.

With fortuitous good timing, assisted by much hard groundwork from Jenny Keene, grants, sponsorships and donations have dramatically increased to match the work still needed.

Pub Charity, which has been with the Kaipupu project all the way, donated another $7200 to cover the cost of completing the tracks.Huge thanks go to the Department of Conservation, especially Robin Cox, Phil Clerke and Frank Rosie, for the intensive, complicated work done to execute the two helicopter rat-poison drops. The thanks extend to the Lotteries Commission for $18,000 of the $28,000 needed to implement a permanent trapping and monitoring programme.

Wildlife Management International's Mike and Biz Bell of Renwick have been contracted. They are world famous for island pest eradication. Recently The Marlborough Express showed Biz Bell being congratulated by Prince Charles on ridding the Scilly Islands of rats.

The extra $10,000 came, just when needed, from the James and Mabel Thorburn Charitable Trust. This is a legacy from the estate of Doug Thorburn, a long-time resident of Picton.

Don't relax - Kaipupu will need a continuing stream of volunteers and donations to sustain this wonderful asset for Marlborough.

The public can help by buying a state-of-the-art stoat trap for $100 with their name inscribed on it. Or they can earn a Kaipupu Track Certificate at $20 a metre. Check out givealittle.co.nz/org/KaipupuPoint.

Canon has donated some superb camera equipment that the sanctuary's education leaders, researchers and publicists will put to good use. Send in your best photo of Kaipupu Point Sounds Wildlife Sanctuary or of native wildlife that may be found in the sanctuary now or in the future. Email photos to info@kaipupupoint.co.nz before Saturday. The competition is open to members and non-members, in two categories: up to 14 years and 14-plus.

Phone Jenny Keene, 027 898 2517 or (03) 572 7288, for more information.

A Pestival is being organised for March 23 on the Waitohi Domain. Great music, succulent food, children's activities, including artistic creations, and much more. Contact Alison and Nozz Fletcher on (03) 573 7226.

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- The Marlborough Express

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