The kererū has been named Bird of The Year

New Zealand's native wood pigeon, the kererū, or kūkūpa as it is known in Northland, has swooped in to claim the Bird of the Year competition. Amassing 5833 votes in the annual competition run by conservation group Forest & Bird, the kererū, kūkūpa, or wood pigeon, as it is variously known, finished well ahead of the second-placed kākāpō on 3772 votes. It's the first time the kūkūpa has taken top spot. A team led by Green Party MP Chlöe Swarbrick campaigned for the kererū to win by highlighting its prodigious appetite and size. The Bird of the Year is run to raise awareness about New Zealand's unique native birds and the threats they face.

Volunteers needed at Whangārei Rest Home Olympics

Volunteers are needed to help at the Whangārei Rest Home Olympics. Our local retirement villages and rest homes are having a fun sporting day for their residents on November 1. Volunteers are needed to help set up and pack down the tables and move heavy equipment. In between times volunteers can cheer on the participants and will be provided with morning tea and lunch. Volunteers don't have to stay for the whole day - they can help out at just the beginning or the end. Set up would be 8.30am and pack down at 2pm at ASB Stadium, Kensington. If you are interested, contact Whangārei District Council community development adviser Claire Wilson on (09) 430 4200, text 021 547 412 or


Eric Rush to speak at The Blast

Rugby great Eric Rush will be the guest speaker at this month's The Blast fundraiser for the Northland Brain Injury Association. The Blast will be held at ASB Stadium, in Kensington, Whangārei, on October 27, with doors opening at 6.30pm. The event is the main fundraiser for the association. Tickets are $120 and include a meal and drinks. Tickets can be bought from the Brain Injury Association by emailing for details for payment, or ring 09 459 5013. There will also be an auction on the night and entertainment from the band Spiral.

Arts + Climate Innovation: The Role of the Arts

Arts + Climate Innovation: The Role of the Arts presents the latest science, inspirational creative projects and connectivity conservation as innovative responses to climate change. That is the subject matter of a seminar at the Whangārei Quarry Gardens next month. Speakers will be Professor James Renwick (Victoria University), Dr Craig Stevens (Niwa), Sarah Meads (Track Zero), painter and sculptor BJ Natanahira, graphic designer Emma McLean, artist and director Dan Mace and artist/textile designer Rona Ngahuia Osborne. It's on November 12, 5.30pm to 8.30pm, register through