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Jeanette Aplin, Motueka 1943: Mum a keen gardener. Dad, born 1896, an axeman proud of his skill. Before I was born he lived in forest camps and cut down NZ native trees with a razor sharp axe from dawn to dusk. (“Breaking in the land”.) But, as he aged, Dad mourned the loss of the forests. He would say, “The birds have gone.” So, growing up, I learned about conservation without knowing the word and became aware that many forces were changing our environment. Since then I’ve lived with husband, Pip, in remote places for 55 years. These include Stephens Island/Takapourewa, Dog Island, Arthur’s Pass National Park and, finally for nearly 40 years, D’Urville Island/Rangitoto ki te Tonga. In supporting D’Urville Island’s stoat eradication project I hope that we can “make a difference” and help bring back the birds.

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