Shell be right in Southland

Last updated 10:12 22/08/2013

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In the South

Michael Laws is in: Losing Otago Regional Council candidate 'gutted' to be denied vote recount Brianna's got that winning feeling Rural GP reflects on training reality check in Christchurch earthquake Central Otago landowners at a crossroads over water use Losing Otago Regional Council candidate to seek recount Central Otago mayor sticks with status quo for deputy ORC candidates on tenterhooks waiting for special votes count Mayor says goodbye to 27 years with the Central Otago District Council Cromwell Museum selling off artefacts Central Otago electors encouraged to get votes in before close-off

Although not renowned as a shell-collecting destination, Southland does have a couple of beaches that are exceptional.

These are Maori Beach on Stewart Island, which has a unique range of specimens, and the beach to the west of the lighthouse at Waipapa Point. Here in the drift, collectors find red and black lampshells, whelks, mussels, limpets, paua, starfish, crabs, scallops, fan shells and topshells. Shell collecting has lost the following it once had, but remains a popular hobby with many.

The photo shows a range of small shells at Waipapa Point.

Southland's first concrete boat was the 32-foot Waihopai, built by Ray Melhop in 1966. Does anyone know its fate?

Southland and New Zealand's only freshwater mataitai was opened on the Mataura River in October, 2006. It extends for 10 kilometres downriver from the Mataura Falls.

A mataitai is an area for the customary gathering of food, in this case eels (tuna) and especially the esteemed lamprey or kanakana.

The Murihiku Purchase was transacted on August 17, 1853, in a deal negotiated by Walter Mantell.

A total of £2600 was paid to its Maori owners for the Murihiku Block, which was the land south of a line between Milford Sound and the Nuggets, excluding Stewart Island, Ruapuke and several reserves.

Southern chief Topi Patuki was known for his hospitality to Europeans, but always felt that Ngai Tahu was unfairly treated in the Murihiku Purchase. He maintained that the tribe had been promised schools and hospitals, and other benefits, which never eventuated.

The Brown Owl was a popular tearooms, milkbar and cake shop which opened in 1928. On July 1, 1944, Prohibition was lifted in Invercargill and the Brown Owl began serving alcohol with meals. This was innovative, but controversial, and liquor sales ceased there in 1949.


An addition to the article on the Ranfurly animal names: In Mr Surveyor Thomson, John Hall-Jones states that his ancestor may merely have been using names commonly used for creeks in the Border Country from which he came.

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The central figure in the picture of the whisky still on June 6 is Inspector Fahey, and the still is in manuka scrubland near Waituna Lagoon. The proprietor of the operation, James Robertson, was fined  £100.

Is there any information or pictures of aerial rabbit poisoning in Southland, the dustbowl at Mossburn, the signal station at Fortrose and the processing of Pilot whales for oil on Stewart Island?

About The South
Lloyd Esler
15 Mahuri Rd,
Otatara, RD 9,
Phone-fax (03) 213 0404

- The Southland Times


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