Congratulations to the winners of the Southern Seabird Awards this year. It was particularly special to see two of our Māori fishers recognised for their work. Ki a kōrua, Tony Walker rāua ko Mike Te Pou, ko tēnei te pīki mihi ki a kōrua.
Tony Walker (Ngāti Porou) received the Advocacy Champion Award. He is a 3rd generation fisher and has been fishing for 40 years. He shares his seabird mitigation techniques with his 150,000 followers worldwide on his page @Tkoffshorefishing and in the last four years has not captured a single seabird.
Mike Te Pou (Ngā Puhi, Ngāi Tuhoe) was awarded the Mitigation Champion Award. He learnt to fish with his koro and has been fishing for over 30 years. Mike’s adopted and contributed to the development hook shield devices which makes hooks harmless to seabirds. He’s had zero bycatch on his vessel.
We are proud to sponsor Southern Seabirds and were honoured to be part of this year’s awards in recognising some of the incredible innovation and leadership out on the water to catch fish not birds.