Re West Coast Marine Park
I have just replied to Forest and Bird giving my thoughts on the proposed West Coast Marine Park- thankyou for the warning in your news.
This proposal is ideological drivel promoted by an organisation who care nothing for recreational values of the majority and who see no value in any place other than that where they have imposed their will.
Again they are promoting a nonsensical approach to protection of species by proposing to totally devote that area, which in this case is large, to the protection of those species, when there is no evidence, either within the discussion document or elsewhere,
that the protection afforded will make any difference at all.
Worst of all their proposal is in deference to the needs of the current users. Herein again we see the needs of Maori promoted above all other human considerations with the by-line that they (Maori) have cultural and spiritual values that they wish
to attach to the land.
I, and I am sure many other fishers, walkers, campers and other users of all nationality, religion and creed also have significant spiritual value embedded in our ability to access the beach and my culture demands that areas such as this should remain
the preserve of the wider community as they are an indicator of, and a contributor to the health of the community, particularly families.
It should be impossible for F&B to justify promoting the closure of this whole stretch of Coast to their end. I do not doubt that there are some areas that should be more vigorously protected from damage where it can be shown to be occurring.
For my part it is impossible to see the harm to any species from a four wheel drive vehicle gaining access to a remote public beach to provide individuals or families with a days fresh air, exercise and entertainment.
The discussion document seeks to protect the environment from overfishing, citing increasing use as Auckland grows, among other considerations.
Practically they intend to achieve this by completely closing the beach to fishing, or by preventing access, or by making access so difficult it is not achievable, or by closing the beach to fishing in favour of permitted fishing, where the permits
are issued by and generally for, one section of the community.
In my view overfishing is an emotive terminology added to this document for impact. Any reasonable person can see that the fish here have no reasonable chance of finding a hook, even if they spent a lifetime looking, such is the scale of the place versus
the effort waged by recreational fishers.
Even the commercial effort does not seem to be that great if judged by observation and recreational results.
Your readers need to be alarmed at this proposal.
They need to get over their Kiwi apathy and complacency and get off their bums and make their views heard or this lot of tree huggers will cause their will to be imposed on us.
Please place the Forest and Bird questionnaire document on your website so readers can easily access it. Place an alternative COMPLETED one there also for busy fisherman's convenience.
All fishers should remember that it is only the squeaky reel that ever gets oiled.
We should, as responsible people also actively discourage the miss-use of the area by the minority who refuse to acknowledge that their actions in ignoring signage and driving their vehicles in sensitive areas, dumping rubbish, and leaving unwanted
fish and waste on the beach impacts only on legitimate users.
We should try having a quiet word. Failing that report them or simply just take their rubbish home with yours.
Finally I noted that this proposal is undertaken through funding provided by the Lotteries Grants Board.
Is it not ironic that revenue provided by the majority is made available to the minority who then use it to try to impose their will on the majority!
I for one will still buy my lotto ticket - I am trying to win so I can buy my own fishing spot before Forest and Bird and every other bunch of do-gooders own them all.
See you on the beach
ED: I will provide an opportunity for subscribers to respond to the West Coast Marine Park proposal next week.