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fertilising the forest

European culture developed along with the bees. In Aotearoa/New Zealand it was the birds (& not the bees) who played a big part in fertilising our forest.

Kereru – our pigeon – travelled great distances between the fruiting trees. Large flocks, flying fast on slow whooshing wingbeats, could be heard, and then seen.

Flying to the top of a tree, wings at full stretch, a bird’s large, heavy body only stopped when a branch held its weight. Crash landing!!

High-up on this perch in the forest canopy, birds rustled and swished. Their beaks opened as wide as their heads. Their bills wrapped around a large berry. Swallowing it whole.

The seed had been waiting for this! Later they’d drop out, all wrapped (in fertilizing bird-pooh) onto the forest floor below.

Now kereru is the only one left to spread these seeds. Huia, piopio, & moa are long gone.

This month’s winner of the draw is Ruth Blair. Congratulations Ruth. A game will go to an organisation of your choice! Plse let me know which one you choose.

I had a fabulous thankyou letter from Andrea Sorger, the principal of Te Ra school – last month’s choice. The game “will undoubtedly bring much enjoyment to our children, especially now that rainy break times are once again a prospect.”

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