The Department of Conservation is concerned that protected seabirds have been shot in the Gulf.
At least five fluttering shearwaters with bullet holes were floating in the water near Little Barrier Island over Auckland Anniversary weekend.
Fluttering shearwaters have a conservation status of ‘relict’, meaning they have a small but stable population, and like all seabirds are absolutely protected by the Wildlife Act. Anyone harassing or harming them could be liable for prosecution and face a jail term of up to two years or a fine of up to $100,000.
DOC says information gathered by the public can help in investigations. “Taking clear photos of the incident at the time and quickly writing down notes of what was observed can prove to be critical.”