Life is going swimmingly for Kaikoura’s marine life which are about to get more protection thanks to the opening of New Zealand’s first whale and seal sanctuaries.
Conservation Minister Nick Smith is due to cut the red ribbon today to open the two sanctuaries and the Hikurangi marine reserve – New Zealand’s largest marine reserve off either of the main islands.
Iwi and community representatives will be present at the low-key ceremony.
The sanctuaries and the reserve were created under the Kaikoura Marine Management Bill which was passed last week.
“These measures will benefit Kaikoura’s rich marine life which includes whales, dolphins, seals, albatross, rock lobster, shellfish and finfish,” Dr Smith said. “It will also help to sustain Kaikoura’s tourism industry, which is worth $134 million a year.”
The bill was the collective effort of Iwi, recreational, commercial and charter fishers, and boating and conservation groups, Dr Smith said.
Read more: http://www.3news.co.nz/Whale-sanctuaries-open-today/tabid/423/articleID/355610/Default.aspx#ixzz39ZDDdWfq