Author Louisa McKerrow

Louisa is the Communications Manager for WWF-New Zealand (World Wide Fund for Nature). She has extensive experience in the areas of media, communications and public relations. Her pen, camera and sense of humour have led her to wonderful work locations throughout Australia, Canada, USA, Solomon Islands, Vietnam, Cambodia, New Zealand and Peru. She was raised on a sheep and cattle farm in Outback Australia. Her specialty sectors are the environment (forest/marine/species conservation and climate change), crisis communications (biosecurity, floods and cyclones), and agriculture (livestock and broad-acre farming). She is an Open Water-accredited diver and has explored underwater ecosystems in the Solomon Islands and Cambodia.

NZ Sea Lion Research Shows More Action Needed to Address Fishing Threat

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New research shows that more action is needed to reduce accidental catch of endangered New Zealand sea lions in fishing nets, said environmental organsiation WWF-New Zealand. NZ sea lions/rāpoka are the most severely threatened and rarest sea lion in the world. They are listed as ‘nationally critical’ by the Department of Conservation, and without further action this species is at risk of extinction. The research, undertaken by a team of scientists from the University of Otago, Massey University and the University of Toronto, and published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America…

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Environmental groups welcome big marine protection announcement by Niue, and call on NZ to up its game

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Kermadec Campaign Partners WWF-New Zealand, Forest & Bird and The Pew Charitable Trusts welcomed the Niue government’s announcement today that it plans to create a large marine protected area covering 40% of its exclusive economic zone, and called on New Zealand to do more to protect the ocean. The newly announced marine protected area will protect the ocean around Niue and nearby Beveridge Reef, an uninhabited atoll that is home to the world’s highest density of grey reef sharks. Once established, the new marine protected area will be the 28th largest in the world. Niue will be one of three…

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Search is on for the next environmental game-changers

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As of today, 17 entries have been logged from across the country for WWF-New Zealand’s 2017 Conservation Innovation Awards, including Dunedin, Nelson, Auckland, Raglan, Kerikeri, Hamilton, Martinborough, Wellington and Waikanae. And we are welcoming many more entries. Open now, the Conservation Innovation Awards will reward innovative environmental game-changers. To submit your idea, visit wwf-nz.crowdicity.com. Designed to help innovators fast-track their ideas to development, the Awards cover three categories – Engaging young people and communities, Predator Free New Zealand 2050, and an Open Category. A prize package of $25,000 will be awarded to each category winner. Entries close on 15 October. All…

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Great Kererū Count has flown

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The 2017 Great Kererū Count (GKC) closed on 1st October and early results are in. The GKC team asked needs New Zealanders across the county to keep their eyes on the skies to help build up a comprehensive picture of where our native pigeon is – and isn’t – found. www.greatkererucount.nz As of now, across New Zealand, there have been 6034 observations and 13,600 kererū counted. Final national numbers are still being analysed. We’re thrilled that so many people from across the country joined the Count this year with observations coming in from across New Zealand from the far north to the deep…

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Nationwide search for conservation innovators kicks off

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The search is on for big, bold, game-changing ideas and new solutions to New Zealand’s greatest environmental challenges, such as freshwater quality, climate change, species decline and invasive pests. Open today, WWF-New Zealand’s 2017 Conservation Innovation Awards will reward innovative environmental game-changers. To submit your idea, visit wwf-nz.crowdicity.com. Designed to help innovators fast-track their ideas to development, the Awards cover three categories – Engaging young people and communities, Predator Free New Zealand 2050, and an Open Category. A prize package of $25,000 will be awarded to each category winner. Entries close on 15 October. “The Conservation Innovation Awards celebrate Kiwi…

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The Big Pre-election Climate Change Policy Debate

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The environment has been a hot topic during the 2017 election campaign but one of the biggest issues, climate change, has received relatively little air time to date. That’s why WWF-New Zealand is hosting a Climate Debate on 19 September 2017 in Auckland, in partnership with Oxfam New Zealand and Fossil Free University of Auckland. Political candidates from five key parties have confirmed that they are attending, including James Shaw, leader of the Green Party and Megan Woods, Labour’s Climate Change spokesperson. The Climate Debate will be held from 7:00-8:30 pm on Tuesday 19 September 2017, in the AMRF Auditorium…

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Taking Wildlife Tracking to Next Level with WWF Conservation Innovation Winner DroneCounts

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WWF-New Zealand Conservation Innovation Awards winner DroneCounts is taking wildlife tracking to the next level in the urgent fight to stem the tragic loss of species, both locally and globally. Thought to be a world first, DroneCounts can GPS track and map the location of tagged endangered species, providing time-synchronised data about the target species’ behaviour to assist conservation management. The system can also be used to track wildlife poachers. DroneCounts took flight after winning $25,000 through the 2016 Conservation Innovation Awards, which enabled the team to further refine the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) design and build a flexible information…

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WWF-New Zealand Conservation Innovation winner RiverWatch making a splash

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A game-changer solution to New Zealand’s freshwater emergency, WWF-New Zealand Conservation Innovation Awards winner the RiverWatch Water Sensor is heading towards commercial market production. As a 2016 Conservation Innovation Awards winner, $25,000 core funding was provided to develop the RiverWatch prototype which remotely monitors and records freshwater quality, where it can be used by hundreds of community groups to collect much-needed data from rivers, lakes and streams. This simple floating device is equipped with unique probes which monitor data, including pH level, temperature, conductivity, turbidity, and dissolved oxygen. Open from 25 September to 15 October, the Conservation Innovation Awards will…

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WWF New Zealand’s on the look out for next environmental game changer

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WWF-New Zealand, with supporters The Tindall Foundation, Department of Conservation, Callaghan Innovation and New Zealand’s Biological Heritage National Science Challenge, is on the search—from research labs to garden sheds and everywhere in between—for new ideas that could positively impact the environment.

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New Zealanders call for better protection for NZ sea lions

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New Colmar Brunton polling released today shows that an overwhelming number of New Zealanders want the government to do more to protect endangered NZ sea lions from being accidentally caught and killed in fishing nets. The research, commissioned by WWF-New Zealand, has found 84% of Kiwis agree that the number of NZ sea lions/rāpoka being accidentally killed by fishing should be further reduced. “These are the world’s rarest sea lions and they live right here in New Zealand,” said WWF-New Zealand campaigner David Tong. “NZ sea lions are listed as ‘nationally critical’, and without further action this species is at…

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