Patricia Latas's blog

The Whenua Hou Ecosystem

Whenua Hou is the island home to the Kakapo. It was originally unhihabited, until the local Maori on the mainland gave the island to Maori-European couples to settle (and presumably to keep them separate and out of trouble). Sealing was the main interest, and life was rugged. Eventually the sealing trade diminished and the population of humans declined.

 

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

The story of Lisa1

Artists for Conservation

 

 

 

What an extrodinary story!

 

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

Starting the art flow

Artists for Conservation

13 April 2014

With all the diversions and interesting things going on, time is ticking away and I am ready to get on with some serious art work.

 

Field sketching is a good base for all illustration. Supplemental (but not professional) photography is integral to proper scientific illustration, so in truth I have already begun!

 

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

Life at the Hut

Ranger Hut on Whenua Hou/Codfish Island

12 April 2014

 

Life at the ranger hut is both routine and extrordinary. Every person on the island works very hard; long hours and often through the night and day. The rangers repair, fix, maintain, catch invisible birds, health check, replace transmitters, track, babysit volunteers and do so much more. They are men and women of great endurance, strength, dedication and knowledge.

 

Location

Whenua Hou Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

Hot Chicks!

Artists for Conservation

12 April 2014

 

Yes, that's right. HOT CHICKS!

 

Unseasonably warm and fine weather on Whenua Hou has brought sun-loving people outdoors, sandflies in numbers, and minor inconvenience to the babies in the rearing unit.

Contrary to everything known about baby birds, and to incubating and hand-rearing baby parrots, Kakapo chicks need to be...COOLED! Kakapos are adapted to cold temperatures, and as the chicks grow and are able to regulate their own temperature, warm weather can bring stress.

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

Nest-minder Dr. Pat!

Artists for Conservation

Over Night, 11-12 April 2014

Nest-minder for the night!

The sweet sounds of moorpork owls and kakas singing in the night, soft wind in the rimu trees; gentle mist and a little hard rain. What could be closer to paradise? A mother kakapo and her chick, of course!

Good news and bad news--I loved this opportunity but I knew it would be hard on my out-of-shape-fat-postchemo-no-endurance body. Luckily Darryl was kind, forgiving and understanding and we made it to the nest site (without stroke or heart attack) just as Huhana left for her first foraging of the night.

Location

Codfish Island, Southland NZ
New Zealand

Arrival at Whenua Hou!

Artists for Conservation

11 April 2014

Arrival! Hoki mai!

At long last, the day has come to depart for the beautiful sanctuary island of Whenua Hou.The day dawned clear and cold in Invercargill, open skies with whispy cirrus clouds. No wind!

 

The first stage was arrival at the quarantine store, where all gear, persons and supplies were minutely inspected for seeds, soil, rodents, insects and other contamination. The entire process for 2 volunteers was about two hours.

 

 

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, NZ
New Zealand

The 14th Flag Expedition


As I write this, I am looking out across the Foveaux Straights, on the far south of the Te Waipaunamu (South Island) of New Zealand, whilst sitting in the kakapo rearing facility on Whenua Hou/Codfish Island. It is cold and windy, the sea choppy with whitecaps. Freezing on the outside but warm in the heart.

Location

Codfish Island, Southland, New Zealand
New Zealand

The 14th Flag Expedition

Artists for Conservation


As I write this, I am looking out across the Foveaux Straights, on the far south of the Te Waipaunamu (South Island) of New Zealand, whilst sitting in the kakapo rearing facility on Whenua Hou/Codfish Island. It is cold and windy, the sea choppy with whitecaps. Freezing on the outside but warm in the heart.

Anticipation and Anxiety

Artists for Conservation

The 14th Flag Expedition (me!) is scheduled to depart the dusty Sonoran Desert in the first week of April, 2014. Arrival to be in the Southern Hemisphere, green and wet, a different season, a different hemisphere, a different date. The plans are in place, the arrangements made, the permits secured--yet the wait is fraught with anxiety as well as excitement.

Syndicate content
© Copyright 2017 Artists for Conservation Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved. "Artists for Conservation", "AFC" and the butterfly logo are registered trademarks of Artists for Conservation Foundation, Inc. AFC International Foundation is a registered charity in Canada (860891761 RR 0001).