Friday, November 24, 2017
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Bird 'senselessly' killed in Tauranga

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It was a mindless act of violence and cruelty.

A fluffy little white-fronted tern chick in a specially constructed nest on an old abutment on the Hairini Bridge in Tauranga has been killed by a rock deliberately thrown from the bridge.

The nesting terns offer a fascinating up close and personal insight into life in the bird colony, but unfortunately, is also perilously close to people passing over the bridge.

Nigel McFadyen, who regularly cycles over the bridge, had been observing the grey chick every day.

“I have watched it grow.” But now the bird has been senselessly killed. “I am really gutted that someone would do that. It is a low thing to do. A very low thing to do.”

When SunLive dropped by on Thursday, the stone and the bird carcass were still in the nest.

It’s not the first time the tern colony has come under attack from both nature and people.

Fourteen months ago, three terns sitting on eggs on the bridge were killed in another attack. The mates kept visiting the nests and sitting with the dead birds.

It raised expert concerns about the future of the birds on the bridge. Entire colonies can be abandoned after such disturbances.

Then two years ago the old wooden framing on the bridge moved in a storm. The nesting habitat was specially reconstructed for the birds and the terns returned to breed. It was considered a remarkable success.

Because of their accessibility, the terns are visited by photographers from all over the country.

Comments on SunLive

Very sad

Posted on 26-01-2017 13:47 | By thegoodlife

I bike past these birds every week on my way to work. How can people be so despicable? It’s so sad, the parent is still standing guard over its dead baby.

Posted on 14-01-2017 18:25 | By Capt_Kaveman

there is a camera nearby so why are they not looking at the footage
I wonder...

Posted on 13-01-2017 17:18 | By GreertonBoy

what makes people do such dumb stuff like this? Most of us do things because we like doing it or get some reward or good feeling from doing whatever. I wonder what good feeling or feeling of accomplishment these idiots get from killing a bird... or any other animal that is of no threat to them? I wonder if they enjoy killing animals or if they are somehow ’ driven’ to do this sort of stuff? Maybe shrinks have done studies on the subject? If not, maybe they should..... please

Posted on 13-01-2017 17:16 | By Capt_Kaveman

Happens every year but nothing gets done about it, requests for mesh last year went unheard

Posted on 13-01-2017 15:38 | By begesch

What about a call for witnesses? Am sure somebody saw something so the culprit could do some cleaning on Tauranga City roads, or in parks, with a high vis vest, just to shame, no need to name.

Posted on 13-01-2017 08:12 | By dumbkof2

should line theses lowlifes up and pelt them with rocks

Posted on 13-01-2017 07:26 | By Linaire

Very sad. What a horrible thing to do! I am disgusted ... I walkover this bridge regularly, and there are always people there observing and photographing these birds.
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