This week the Department of Conservation has admitted that 50% (six out of 12) monitored kea died following a 1080 poison drop in the Matukituki Valley, near Wanaka. We dont know how many unmonitored kea died but must assume 50% of those too.
This follows a series of cases where our iconic and endangered kea have been recklessly poisoned in pursuit of the currently fashionable “Predator Free 2050” dogma.
Some of the kea deaths follow the kea eating the deadly poisonous baits. Others are through secondary kill after kea eat other birds or rodents that have been poisoned. The irony is that Kea, like Weka, Ruru and the many other species that are exposed to secondary kill are themselves “predators.”
The Department of Conservation knows that kea are vulnerable to 1080 poison baits, as they have a long and tragic list of others cases where large proportions of kea populations were recklessly killed with 1080 poison. They know that kea which live close to populated areas, are particularly vulnerable to poison baits, resulting in a Code of Practice for using 1080 poison in Kea Habitat.
“The kea (Nestor notabilis) is a nationally endangered species that requires protection from introduced pests for persistence and maintenance of its range. However, kea can also be vulnerable to pest management tools, including aerially applied 1080 baits. This Code of Practice is designed to make the best use of aerially applied 1080 for pest management whilst minimising negative impacts on kea populations long term.” It recognises the particular risk to kea from 1080 poison in “scrounge influenced” locations such as the Matukituki Valley compared to remote locations.
Legal obligations to protect Kea under the Wildlife Act
This Code of Practice is at odds with the legal obligations created by the Wildlife Act which create a criminal offence with substantial penalties for any unauthorised “hunt or kill” of wildlife.
Last year the Supreme Court interpreted the Wildlife Act and explained what “hunt or kill” means. The definition is wide and includes the killing or or foreseeable harm to any individual kea, whether or not that harm was intended.
 We agree with the Court of Appeal that it is implicit in the provision of the s 68B defence that an intention to kill or injure protected marine wildlife need not be proved for an offence to be made out under s 63A. Moreover, the s 68B defence strongly suggests the prohibited acts are not limited to acts done in the course of, or for the purpose of, “hunting” or “killing” in their common usage sense. That is because the availability of the defence is not limited to bycatch circumstances, and expressly extends to accidental or incidental death or injury caused by “[a]ny” person, and by “any means whatever”.61 Since the defence responds to the offence, it suggests that acts done outside of hunting in its common usage sense may fall within s 63A.
Conclusion on meaning of “hunt or kill”
 To conclude this interpretative analysis, we are satisfied that the definition of “hunt or kill” captures within the s 63A offence conduct which is unconnected to the common usage meaning of hunting and killing, extending to pursuing, molesting and disturbing protected wildlife, whether or not those prohibited acts take place in the course of, or for the purpose of, hunting or killing or otherwise. We are satisfied that the overall statutory scheme supports this interpretation, as does the Act’s purpose. This interpretation does not lead to incoherence in the statutory scheme, nor to over or indeterminate criminalisation. The nature of the prohibited acts, together with the availability of the s 68B and common law “no fault” defence, create a coherent framework from which exposure to criminal liability can be sufficiently predicted.
 We summarise the nature of the prohibited acts as follows. In the s 2(1) definition of “hunt or kill”:
(a) “hunting” means an intentional act committed if a person is proved to have had an intent to hunt;
(b) “killing” means causing the death of a protected animal. An intention to kill need not be proved;
(c) “pursuing” means to intentionally chase but does not include luring or attracting or merely following the animal at a safe distance;
(d) “disturbing” means an action which physically or mentally agitates the protected animal to a level creating a real risk of significant harm; and (e) “molesting” means intentionally troubling, distressing or injuring a protected animal.
 There is no requirement to prove an intent to commit the offence in s 63A. Aside from the prohibited act of “hunting”, there is also no requirement to prove that any of the prohibited acts listed above are committed in the course of, or for the purpose of, hunting or killing in the ordinary usage sense of those words. Attempting any of the prohibited acts would also constitute an offence under s 63A.
Formal complaint about the Kea ecocide and request for Official Information
I have made a formal complaint to the Department of Conservation and requested information to help explain their ongoing decisions to expose our few remaining kea to poison.
Instead of accepting responsibility for aerially spreading deadly poison in circumstances where its own Code of Practice anticipates harm to kea, the Department of Conservation’s media spin team chose to blame the public. This lack of accountability undermines public confidence in government and in the rule of law.
Other harm from 1080 and Brodifacoum poison
There is so much evidence of harm from 1080 and brodifacom poisons. Unfortunately no competent and independent forum is currently available in NZ to connect the dots to stop the Ecocide.
DoC arranged for ERMA to review 1080 use in 2007. Back then rats were barely mentioned and the only justification was killing possums. The ERMA report gave approval for 1080 use conditional on consultation, social licence on further research.1080-Communications-Guidelines
Since then government respect for the rule of law and for the public it is supposed to represent has gone backwards. So has sound policy and common sense.
Government has passed exemption regulations to exclude public consultation on an array of issues which affect community and environmental wellbeing. Former Minister for the Environment Nick Smith told his Cabinet colleagues he was intentionally nationalising decision making on the use of 1080 poison despite advice to him and his advisors that aerial use of 1080 poison could have significant adverse effects.
The former Minister also told them this raised no Bill of Rights or Human Rights issues. It appears that not one of his colleagues or advisors questioned this.
Its a similar story with the passing of regulations to smooth the way for new infrastructure for 5G based on the assumption that 5G can be assumed to be safe despite the WHO classifying it as a class 2B carcinogen in 2011 and NZ exposure limits being tens, hundreds and in some cases thousands of times more lax than those adopted by other more precautionary states (such as Russia, China and India).
Other unprincipled government action- the gun law reforms and the Apec Amendment Bill
We’ve also seen this recently with the unprincipled and reactive gun reforms which serve to disarm law abiding cirizens, reward the police for their own failings in approving a person who clearly was not fit and proper to have a gun licence and who is said to have not met the criteria, and compound the problems of illegal guns and lack of trust in government.to date many with an opposing view including the NZ Outdoors Party have been excluded from the select committee hearings.
Since then the NZ Outdoors Party has also submitted in opposition to the Apec Amendment Bill which is designed to allow foreign military to bring any weapons into New Zealand. The NZ Outdoors Party strongly opposes this proposed reform and pointed to the Rainbow Warrior case as an example of a supposedly friendly state committing terrorist action in New Zealand.
In New Zealand we have no written constitution to restrain our government and no effective machinery of government to prevent abuse of power or to protect the public interest. Duties owed to tangata whenua are also typically overlooked.
I’ve given up waiting for a white knight to save us. We need to find ways how to save ourselves. We need vision and the courage to step up to create the place we want New Zealand to be.
I understand much about how NZ works and the fragility of many official decisions from my study of science, public health and environmental management and law and my work for any with government and an array of different interests over the last 30 years, leading to my practice specialising in complex emerging issues.
I’ve learned that the way we respond to challenges and hard decisions determines if our world expands or contracts. Life can be tough, but we always have choices. By making a stand for truth and justice and against bullying and government corruption and abuse of the law allow us to force change.
The challenge is finding a competent and independent forum to consider complex issues.
The International Tribunal of Natural Justice
Recently I travelled to Bali to give testimony to an international tribunal and speak at the New Earth Festival. It was an incredible experience sharing information with visionaries and leaders from around the world who are acting to create a better and fairer world. Representatives came from all corners of the world and included all the Kings of Indonesia’s many islands.
The International Tribunal is a peoples tribunal set up to assess complex international concerns.
It fills an important role in collecting and sharing information to raise awareness about difficult issues, and promoting public good change. Its approach is in stark contrast to many government organised tribunals which are carefully managed and lobbied by powerful vested interests to control the terms of reference, and which often have neither the will nor the multidisciplinary expertise necessary to source evidence, identify flawed assumptions or change decision making from a short term corporation and profit focus to a long term people, humanity and environmental focus.
Here is a short summary from Sacha Stone. He uses the NewZealand examples of using rescue helicopters to spread deadly 1080 poison baits and governments labeling activists and pacifists as “terrorists” to help explain work in raising world attention about Genocide and Ecocide.
Here is my testimony in Bali
For an array of reasons the International Tribunal is no longer coming to NZ. However a People’s Inquiry is instead being set up by Flora and Fauna to investigate poison use in New Zealand. Mote details are expected to be announced soon.
I support the Flora and Fauna Inquiry.
I suspect this issue will also need international exposure. If anyone has other ideas others of international forums or media that are equipped to stop the Ecocide, please share them.
Others such as Mitai Paraone from Hokianga gave testimony by video link
The Ecocide of our iconic species is devastating.
People Power can stop it, but only if we unite.