Nurse Appalled by Continuing Expressway Slaughter


Ducklings and mother in safer times

Nursing tutor Denny McLeod, of Te Horo,  says she’s appalled by the continuing slaughter of birds on the Kāpiti Expressway. — and says the Transport Agency’s reaction to an earlier KIN story is inadequate.

She says: “Since sending you my letter and challenge to NZTA to erect bird netting to the guardrail to stop the ducks crossing, there have been many more deaths, with bodies littered on the side of the motorway as well as in the middle of the road.

The Expressway near Waikanae where many ducks and Pukeko have been killed by vehicles
‘Four ducks, one hawk and nine Pukekos killed in three weeks’ 
“In three weeks, I’ve counted four more Ducks, one Hawk and nine  Pukeko’s.  For me personally as a Nurse, when did it become OK to run over a living thing that feels pain and fear — then  leave it to suffer?”
Denny,  who’s a Tutor at Whitireia Polytechnic and has taught in the Bachelor of Pacific Nursing Degree and the Paramedic Degree ( and is now helping develop content for a Health Care Assistant Certificate) adds:
“Surely there’s a more cost-effective way to protect them ( the birds) other than planting over 1.4 million plants.
What if the birds were Kereru

 Denny says: “I don’t know which is worse: cruelty or indifference.

How much energy does it take to speak up? We’ve just had the Kereru crowned “bird of the year” so my question is: would the indifference of the NZTA change if instead of ducklings being run over on the expressway, they were Kereru?

“Would more people speak up?   Or is it going to take a human death in the attempt to avoid ducklings for NZTA to review their policy?”

“Don’t get me wrong, it’s great that NZTA have “worked tirelessly” in considering the wildlife

NZTA only going half the distance.

“But building wetlands and native bush either side of the expressway is only going half the distance –- as stated in my first article, animals will see the lovely bush and ponds on the other side of the road and just wander out.”

She says that although NZTA spokesman Chris Hunt states that ‘animals or birds on the expressway happens occasionally [in regards to loss]’, I would challenge him to do a regular drive up and down the expressway. 

“Because I know for sure, from driving that stretch of road five days a week, that there are far more than “occasional” animal deaths.  

“If NZTA really considers the problem, why don’t they build safe corridors or a large drain pipe under the expressway for them to use periodically?  “





HI Geoffrey. I agree it’s too late to place tunnels under the road now but they can consider this an option for future expressway road placements. They also could erect bird netting now (the small square netting so the ducklings can’t get through) – this would be a very cost effective simple solution and may save some lives yet NZTA won’t even consider this. I even offered to pay for the stretch opposite the ponds. There’s a guard rail running the length of the expressway so they could easily attach it to that in places where bird life is most vulnerable. would take them a day at most.


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