7 Apr 2012

Dolphin protest targets PM's office

4:41 pm on 7 April 2012

About 100 protesters gathered outside the Prime Minister's office in West Auckland on Saturday lobbying for better laws to protect endangered New Zealand dolphins.

The Government is proposing to extend the protection zone of the Maui's dolphin and widen an area where set-netting is banned, near where the dolphins breed and feed.

The protesters say the area covered by the ban should also include harbours and dolphin corridors down the West Coast of the South Island.

On Saturday morning, they marched outside John Key's Hellensville electorate office and staged a dolphin funeral.

They say the Government's proposal will only continue to expose the dolphins to unsustainable fishing and put them at further risk of extinction.

A report by the Department on Conservation shows the population of the Maui's dolphin has halved since 2005 to just 55 adults.