My family have connections to the French Pass district through my mother’s family, the Webbers, that go back to the 1860s. We have owned property at Cherry Tree Bay in Catherine Cove, since 1962, the family’s playground ever since. In the early 1990s, we started a localised stoat trapping program responding to the alarming decline in native birdlife we observed. The more we persisted, the more we caught. But the decline has been continuous nonetheless.
I have been involved in island and national parks pest eradication charitable trusts since 2006, including Abel Tasman National Park’s Project Janszoon.
The Harleys have supported Rangitoto Birdsong from its inception. New Zealand has a treasure trove of expertise and science in pest eradication, based upon research and experience. This eradication project is calling upon all that learning to enable the return of the island’s native wildlife. It is a huge and challenging task (the island is this country’s 8th largest), but we are up to that challenge. I am honoured to be able to support Rangitoto Birdsong’s mission.