11 Jul 2013

Penguin breeding areas thin on ground

10:17 pm on 11 July 2013

Severe coastal erosion and a lack of floods on the West Coast this year has some concerned that the breeding areas for little blue penguins have all but disappeared.

The endangered bird traditionally comes ashore at this time of year to mate and burrow a nest into sand banks. But various weather events have swept away sand and vegetation, leaving just steep, rocky cliffs.

A marine specialist for the Department of Conservation, Don Neale, says land development is also adding to the problem.