As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Dead birds wash up on Waikato beaches

By: Frances Cook, | New Zealand News | Thursday November 7 2013 16:25

UPDATED 5:28pm: Those heading to Waikato's beaches are being warned not to be alarmed if they spot large numbers of bird carcasses.

184 short-tailed shearwater have so far washed up between Waikorea Beach and Taharoa.

Department of Conservation principal science advisor Hugh Robertson says the deaths were probably caused by stormy weather, but admits it's a lot of birds in one go.

"On average probably between one and three hundred birds a year of that species, the short-tailed shearwater, would get wrecked on New Zealand beaches throughout the whole of New Zealand."

Rough weather is likely to be behind the birds washing up on Waikato beaches.

Mr Robertson says it's an unusually large number, but still a natural phenomenon.

"They're out there battling the winds and trying to get a feed at the same time out of the ocean.

"So if it's really rough weather, then it makes feeding a lot more difficult."

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