Another tree attacked

Further reports are emerging of trees attacks in the Bay of Islands after news last week that four pōhutukawa along the beachfront in Opito Bay, near Kerikeri, have been poisoned and are likely to die. Far North District councillor Ann Court said she believed a large magnolia, on the corner of State Highway 10 and Kahikatearoa Rd, opposite the Carters store in Waipapa, had met a similar fate. She first noticed the tree, which flowered prolifically in spring, was ailing in early October. She could see no drill holes but at that time all the grass around it was dead. Since then the tree also appeared to have died. It still had its leaves but they were brown. ''It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see it's been poisoned.'' It is not clear whether the magnolia is on council road reserve or private land. The land is currently vacant.

Brigade wants gear back

Kaeo Fire Brigade is calling for the return of a piece of equipment stolen while the volunteers were attending a medical emergency involving a toddler yesterday morning. The brigade was called out about 5.30am to assist a 23-month-old child with breathing difficulties at the former Whangaroa campground, now an emergency housing facility, while an ambulance was on its way from Doubtless Bay. Fire chief Lindsay Murray said he placed a red flashing light by the driveway to help ambulance officers know where to go. When he went to collect it half an hour later it had been stolen. The disc-shaped light is made of orange rubber and is about 25mm high and 100mm across.

Shellfish warning extended

A public health warning has been issued against collecting shellfish in the Bay of Islands, extending to the outer heads between Cape Wiwiki (north) to Cape Brett (south). Anyone eating shellfish from this area is potentially at risk of illness. Cooking or freezing the shellfish does not remove the toxin. Shellfish gathered within the last 5 days could also cause illness so should not be consumed. Members of the public with queries about shellfish safety may call Whangarei Hospital, phone 09 430 4100 and request the on-call Health Protection Officer.

Woman cut from car

A woman had to be cut from the wreckage of a car after a single-vehicle crash near Omapere. Rawene Fire Brigade station officer Nopera Pikari said the accident occurred on State Highway 12 just south of Pakia Hill about 3.15pm on Wednesday. One of the two young Hokianga women in the vehicle was trapped and had to be cut free. Both were transported initially to hospital in Rawene with one later flown to Whangārei Hospital.

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ArtBeat a finalist

ArtBeat has been announced as a finalist in the Best Community Event category at the NZEA Event Awards for 2018. The annual free interactive art festival, organised by Creative Northland, is the only finalist from Northland in this year's awards. It is up against Hawke's Bay Christmas at the Park run by Kaisen Charitable Trust, HighLight: Carnival of Lights 2017 run by Hutt City Council, IRONMĀORI Taupō-nui-a-Tia 2018 run by Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board and Light Up Bike Spectacle by Whanganui District Council for the crown. All category winners will be announced at the NZEA Event Awards function to be held in Auckland on 26 March 2019 at Shed 10.